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Teen Jumps Off Bloomingdale Trail To Escape Police, Gets Arrested

By Alisa Hauser | January 24, 2017 3:21pm | Updated on January 26, 2017 4:09pm
 Wayfinding signs along The 606.
Wayfinding signs along The 606.
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DNAinfo/Alisa Hauser

WICKER PARK — A 16-year-old, who was part of a group of six who allegedly robbed a Bucktown man at gunpoint on Sunday evening, was arrested after jumping off The 606's elevated Bloomingdale Trail in an effort to flee police, authorities said.

In an email to community leaders, a Shakespeare District police officer said that a juvenile was arrested after police "pinged" the location of the armed robbery victim's stolen iPhone using the “Where’s My Phone?’ tracking app.

Officer Michelle Tannehill, a Chicago Police Department spokeswoman, confirmed Tuesday that the teen, who is 16 and lives in Humboldt Park, was arrested around 8:30 p.m. Sunday in the 1800 block of North Fairfield Street after he'd tried to evade officers by jumping off the elevated Bloomingdale Trail.

It is not known if the teen and the five others he was allegedly with used the 17-foot-high trail as a means to get away from the crime scene, which occurred a mile east in the 2000 block of West Cortland Street in Bucktown.

Tannehill said the teen was walking with two other suspects on the elevated path, part of the 606's 2.7-mile-long park system, when all three of the young men ran away from police, who'd tracked their location to the trail by using the app.

The teen, whose name is not being released, was charged with one felony count of robbery/armed with a firearm, Tannehill said.

A second suspect who was walking with the teen was questioned in the 1700 block of North Fairfield Avenue and released without being charged, and a third ran away, Tannehill said.

Information about the teen who was arrested was not immediately available on Tuesday. On Thursday, Tandra Simonton, a spokeswoman for the Cook County State's Attorney's office, said "the case was referred to juvenile court." 

"The minor is not in custody; the incident is under review to determine if criminal charges will be filed," Simonton said.  

News of the teen's arrest came after community leaders questioned why police had released a suspect from the incident. Tannehill said that the person who had been questioned and released was an adult and not a juvenile.