Reporting Bob Roberts
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CHICAGO (WBBM) – The Guardian Angels are stepping up their anti-crime patrols aboard CTA ‘L’ trains and at ‘L’ stations in response to the recent rash of smart phone robberies.
In recent months, the Angels have patrolled the ‘L’ between 7 p.m. and 4 a.m. But coverage has been beefed up, in order to supply patrols daily between 1 p.m. and 3 a.m.
The Angels’ focus is the Green Line between Ashland and Central, but Angels Chicago chapter leader Miguel Fuentes told WBBM that patrols also will be visible at key transfer points on the Rapid Transit system, including Clark/Lake, Roosevelt, the Red Line-Blue Line transfer tunnel at Jackson and the Red-Brown-Purple Line transfer points at Belmont and Fullerton.
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It was the Fullerton stop at which an iPhone robbery resulted in the death of 68-year-old Sally Katona-King in March, when the robber pushed her and she fell down a flight of stairs. The targeted section of the Green Line is one on which Chicago Police seek a man who has robbed passengers at knife point since July 11.
Although unarmed, Fuentes said the Angels mean business.
“If you do this type of crime in front of the Guardian Angels, we will apprehend you, whether (we do so) verbally or physically, until the police arrive,” he said.
Fuentes said the Angels’ goal is to bring peace of mind and a greater degree of safety to ‘L’ riders.
He said that more than 30 smart phones each month are stolen on certain ‘L’ lines.