Early Saturday evening was not a good time to be in Chicago’s Streeterville neighborhood. A mob of 15 – 20 teenagers is believed to be responsible for as many as 5 attacks in the area that night.
They struck quickly and without warning.
Reports indicate that the teens physically assaulted the victims first, and then grabbed for wallets, cell phones and other electronic gear. The victims never even had a chance to hand over their valuables to avoid being beaten.
What can you do to keep from becoming a Mag Mile crime statistic?
1) Stop thinking that because you are walking around in a “nice neighborhood” you don’t need to pay attention to what is going on around you.
2) Practice being aware by looking around you for potentially dangerous people and places they might hide.
3) If you spot a gang of teenagers, you suspect may be looking for trouble, walk into a store or restaurant and call 311 the Police Departments non-emergency number, and report your concerns.
4) When walking or sitting alone, refrain from texting. You can’t maintain awareness of your surroundings when your head is down trying to read or text.
5) Don’t use headphones or ear buds that will prevent you from hearing someone approaching from behind.
One of the victims, Krzysztof Wilkowski, described what happened to him.
“It was boom, like a swarm of insects. It just happened too quick. I didn’t even have time to be scared.” About 20 young men — apparently teens — began grabbing at his cell phone and punching him, he said. “They were hitting me. I was hitting them back.” The group eventually fled — without Wilkowski’s phone, scooter or wallet.
Reports have indicated that the victims were never given a chance to give up their valuables to avoid being hurt.
In situations like this you may need to react as Mr. Wilkowski did and fight back.
1) If you do fight back then you need to fight all out. It was lucky that none of the victims was seriously hurt. A punch or a kick to the wrong place could have cost them their lives. So, if you are attacked don’t hold back.
2) Do whatever you need to do to defend yourself, and yell as loud as you can while you are fighting.
3) Keep your hands up to protect your head and throat.
4) Use your hands to strike for the eyes, throat, and groin, and then run if possible.
5) Try to stay on your feet and keep moving. Going to the ground should be avoided, especially when dealing with multiple attackers.
Don’t be afraid be aware. Awareness is the key to your safety. Pay attention to who and what is around you and have a great summer in city.
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