The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Robbers Have Been Mugging Cyclists On The 606 Trail, Police Warn

By Rachel Cromidas in News on Mar 7, 2016 2:38PM

One of the first concerns the city faced when it sought to redevelop the Northwest Side's Bloomingdale Trail into a network of public parks tied together by an elevated railroad was the questions of how to keep trail users safe from crime. Now, almost a year since The 606's opening, police are warning about a spate of robberies in which cyclists were attacked and mugged on the trail.

Police identified three recent robberies in a police alert released last weekend. One of them appears to be the case of a 25-year-old cyclist who told Chicagoist he was beaten and robbed on Feb. 19 while riding home to Logan Square.

The attack reportedly took place around 11:30 p.m. in the 3200 block of West Bloomingdale Avenue, a police spokeswoman told Chicagoist. The muggers took the cyclist's iPhone, bicycle, bag and wallet.

"I wasn't really scared, except for when the guy who had my neck was choking me, because they couldn't find my wallet," the man, who spoke to Chicagoist under the condition of anonymity, said in an email. "I was pretty tired, it was the end of a full day for me, and I was listening to earbud headphones at a low volume. This, coupled with the straight up surprise of three guys jumping at me, I didn't stand any chance of fighting back."

According to the police alert, the most recent robbery was reported at 2558 W. Bloomingdale Ave. around 10:30 p.m. Thursday night. A third robbery reportedly took place at 2542 W. Bloomingdale Ave. at about 11:15 p.m. Tuesday night. In each incident, two to four attackers pulled victims off their bicycles, stole their property and fled. In the Feb. 19 incident, one robbery allegedly placed the cyclist in a headlock, the police alert said. In the Thursday incident, one attacked had a handgun and the cyclist struggled with the robber.

The suspects were described as black, between the ages of 16 and 21, between 5'7" and 6'2" and weighed between 125 and 180 lbs. They were wearing dark-colored hooded sweatshirts, the alert said.