Two would-be thieves targeted an on-duty Chicago police officer Wednesday night on the South Side, with one of the men pointing a gun at the cop as she sat in an unmarked car.
The female officer was not in uniform, and was sitting in the driver’s seat of the unmarked unit, about to go into a neighborhood meeting in the 2900 block of South Vernon Avenue in the Prairie Shores neighborhood when she was confronted about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday. It’s possible the officer wasn’t the first person the pair targeted Wednesday night, as a black pickup was used in an earlier armed robbery of two other women on the South Side, said Kellie Bartoli, a police spokeswoman.
The officer was about to attend a community outreach meeting as part of the department’s community policing program when the robbery happened, Bartoli said.
A black pickup pulled up next to her and the passenger jumped out, pointed a gun at her and demanded her property, officials said Thursday. Details weren’t immediately available on what was said after that, but Bartoli said the two men quickly realized the woman they were trying to rob was an officer and they took off empty-handed.
The officer “had a dispatch radio at the time, but the report does not specify how the (two) realized the victim is an officer,” Bartoli wrote in an email. The report didn’t say if the officer called in the incident with her radio, or whether the officer showed her service pistol.
Bartoli said the attempted armed robbery of the officer was cross-referenced in police files with an earlier report, in which two women were robbed, “because both involve two (people) in a black pickup truck” committing robberies.
In the earlier case, about 5 p.m. in the 6900 block of South South Shore Drive in the South Shore neighborhood, a 46-year-old woman told officers she was getting out of her vehicle when a man came up, demanded money and took her belongings. A 45-year-old woman who was with her had been standing next to the same vehicle when a second man approached, showed a gun and also demanded money and took her property, Bartoli said.
Afterward, the two robbers got into a black pickup and drove off, headed north on South Shore Drive, according to police. The women weren’t injured.
They were able to provide a detailed description of the men who robbed them. Both were black with black hair in dreadlocks and were about 25 to 30 years old, Bartoli said.
The man who robbed the 45-year-old woman stands about 5-foot-6 to 5-foot-8, weighs roughly 190 to 200 pounds and was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt with a white zipper, she said. Information on his eye color wasn’t available.
The man who held up the 46-year-old woman had brown eyes and was described as 6-foot-2 to 6-foot-5, weighing about 140 to 150 pounds, and was last seen wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and black shorts, according to police.