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Prosecutors: Men Attacked, Maced Women in Lakeview After Losing at Casino

By Erin Meyer | February 9, 2013 8:58am

COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — A trio of bandits are accused of robbing two women in Lakeview Thursday after one of them lost his money at a casino, prosecutors said.

Umer Mohammad, 22, Matthew Fornalewski, 22, and Shimilan Bhadur Kahn decided to "hit some licks ... (after) one of them lost a significant amount of money at the casino," Cook County Assistant State's Attorney Lorraine Scaduto said Friday.

According to prosecutors, the three picked out their victims as they exited the Belmont CTA station in the early morning hours Thursday.

Sensing that they were being followed, the two women, 21 and 22, slipped in to the 7-Eleven at the corner of Barry Street and Racine Avenue, where they waited for about 15 minutes before continuing on their way, Scaduto said.

But when the women emerged from the store, Mohammad sprayed one of them in the face with mace or pepper spray, Scaduto said in court Friday.

When he grabbed for her purse, the woman fought back, she said. He allegedly "dragged the victim along the sidewalk until the purse strap broke." 

Mohammad and his cohorts allegedly fled with the second woman chasing after them and jumped in a dark colored Yukon, according to court documents.

Police spotted a vehicle matching the description of the Yukon moments later, according to the documents. When the officers pulled in front of the vehicle near the intersection of Damen Avenue and Barry, two of the men took off running but were later found hiding in a backyard nearby.

All three face two counts of aggravated robbery. Mohammad and Fornalweski, both of whom allegedly ran from police and hid under a backyard porch in the 2000 block of West Barry, were also charged with resisting arrest.

Cook County Judge Edward Harmening set Mohammad's bond at $300,000, Fornalewski's at $350,000 and Kahn's at $200,000.

Mohammad, who resides in Lincolnwood, is a citizen of Pakistan. Fornalewski, on probation at the time of the robbery, lives in Skokie, and Kahn is from the 6000 block of Talman Avenue in Chicago.