4-Jan-19 An anonymous tip led to the arrest of a 16-year-old boy in connection with the mob attacks last Saturday at the CTA Red Line station at State & Chicago that injured three people.
The unidentified teen was charged with one felony count of aggravated battery causing great bodily harm and one felony count of mob action. He will be in juvenile court on Friday.
His victim, according to Chicago Police Department, sustained great bodily harm, suffering bone fractures and abrasions while waiting on the platform for a train.
A 29-year-old California woman, her 28-year-old Chicago boyfriend, and a 26-year-old man were beaten, without provocation, by a large group of teens on December 29 between 5:00 and about 7:12 p.m. The 28-year-old man suffered a fractured eye socket and injuries to his hand and lip.
There were reports of teens fighting at a nearby McDonalds, disturbances at Water Tower Place three blocks east involving 50 to 60 people, shoplifting, and passengers rocking a CTA train side to side.
(Left) Frame from video by Vashon Jordan Jr. showing people on a CTA Red Line train at State & Chicago at the time of the mob attacks.
A 15-year-old boy also was arrested and charged with aggravated battery of two victims plus mob action. He was in juvenile court on Thursday.
According to police, the 15-year-old is seen on CTA surveillance video, attacking the victims.
This offender was observed delivering multiple punches and kicks to both victims, as eight to ten other offenders also battered the victims, said CPD. One of the two victims sustained great bodily harm, suffering bone fractures, abrasions, and lacerations.
Mob action, in this case, is the knowing or reckless use of force or violence by two or more people, acting together, without authority of law.
Police had no advance warning, says alderman
2nd Ward Alderman Brian Hopkins says that despite recent upgrades to surveillance technology, some time passed before police could gain control of the situation.
The 18th District patrol officers responded immediately and appropriately, wrote Hopkins (right) in his newsletter on Wednesday, but unfortunately, they had no advance warning that such a large group of youth was assembling, and therefore the police were vastly outnumbered.
He says an internal review is underway to address problems.
According to Hopkins, new cameras allow police to zoom in on crimes in progress and can follow criminals as they flee the scene of a crime. Facial-recognition technology, he says, allows officers to scan and recognize the faces of wanted offenders with active warrants.
Despite these upgrades in monitoring safety, the warning systems were not as effective as they need to be, wrote Hopkins.
Teens will require adult supervision at mall
Meanwhile, Water Tower Place announced it will require anyone age 17 or under to be supervised by an adult while at the shopping mall after 4:00 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The adult must be at least 21 years old.
Mitchell Feldman, Senior General Manager for GGP, which owns and operates Water Tower Place, says the new policy was a difficult decision but is designed to eliminate disruptive behavior by unsupervised youth.
The mall at 835 North Michigan Avenue has experienced a series of mob-related incidents over the past year. Large groups have been driven out of the mall only to cause havoc in nearby parks, side streets, and subway stations.
In March 2018, GGP was aquired by Toronto-based Brookfield Property Partners.
CWB Chicago contributed to this story.