Ear Hustle

Mother And Daughter Included In The 9 Charged In Chicago Retail Theft Ring

retail theft ring suspects

Nine people, including a mother and daughter, allegedly stole thousands of dollars worth of purses, shoes, coats and other items from at least five stores from Nov. 19 to Dec. 10, prosecutors said Saturday.

The nine, who had more than $21,000 worth of merchandise — some still bearing price tags — were arrested Friday, police and prosecutors said.

Among the stores targeted in the thefts was T.J. Maxx at 1745 W. Fullerton Ave., Marshalls at 7601 S. Cicero Ave. and a second Marshalls at 1834 W. Fullerton Ave.

Two smaller shoe stores on the South Side near 47th Street and Ashland Avenue were also hit by some members of the crime ring, said Cook County Assistant State’s Attorney Alex Molesky.

The suspects were caught on surveillance video, Molesky said.

While setting bail Saturday in Cook County court, Judge Adam Bourgeois Jr. especially scolded the suspects for targeting the two smaller neighborhood stores: “People work hard to open those stores up. … It’s not going to happen in front of me.”

The suspects “would arrive in vans, walk into a retail store, produce bags and then fill the bags with merchandise,’’ and leave without paying, according to police.

The suspects may be responsible for other similar thefts around the city, and the investigation is ongoing, according to police.

Ernestine Lucas, 64, and Nicole Lucas, 33, both of the 6500 block of South Mozart Street, were each ordered held in lieu of $100,000 bail.

James Synchef, an attorney for both women, said in court that the two were mother and daughter.

The other suspects are:

Michael Shaw, 40, of the 6900 block of South Green Street, who was ordered held in lieu of $250,000 bail.

Tabitha Jones, 25, of the 9000 block of South Drexel Avenue, who was ordered held in lieu of $75,000 bail.

Lonyae Barr, 21, of the 1900 block of West Garfield Boulevard, who was ordered held in lieu of $100,000 bail.

Dartanya Banks, 33, of the 7900 block of South Ingleside Avenue, who was ordered held in lieu of $100,000 bail.

Kiara Jefferson, 21, of the 8000 block of South Dobson Avenue, who was ordered held in lieu of $30,000 bail.

Tenisha Triplett, 29, whose address is not known, who was ordered held in lieu of $50,000 bail.

Derrell Cooper, 21, of the 1900 block of East 72nd Place, who did appear Saturday in bond court.

All were charged with felony theft.

Jones was also charged with misdemeanor assault. Shaw, Ernestine Lucas and Nicole Lucas also were charged with felony financial crime, police said.

Source: Chicago Tribune

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