Robberies, muggings on rise

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Between Nov. 11 and Nov. 21, there have been 19 reported robberies in the 3rd precinct. Although there have been arrests in a large number of robberies, the incidents continue to occur.

During a recent robbery, the victim attempted to take the weapon from the suspect and was injured in the process. The majority of the robberies have occurred between 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. Suspect descriptions vary and involve one or more suspects. In three of the cases, suspects simply walked up and assaulted victim(s) without provocation or warning. Also in three cases, suspect(s) targeted businesses.

In eight of the incidents, suspect(s) threatened victims with a gun, either handgun or shotgun; in one case a knife was used. Some of the victims were just outside their homes at the time of the robbery. Suspects wore ski masks in three of the robberies.

Donald Greeley, a crime prevention specialist in the Phillips neighborhood, said descriptions of suspects are vague, and in a few cases where arrests were made, suspects were soon back out on the street.

Greeley said the crimes, taken as a whole, represent a substantial increase over reported robberies last year. He mentioned warmer weather and “new opportunities” with the new LRT as possibilities for the crime increase. An increase of auto thefts and robberies near or adjacent to the LRT line has also been reported.

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