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Updated 06/11/12 – 4:21 p.m.
CHICAGO (CBS) – Eight teenagers have been charged with mob action, after four people were hurt in at least three mob attacks in and near downtown over the weekend.
CBS 2’s Mai Martinez reports the most recent attack happened Sunday night in the 800 block of North Dewitt Place in the Gold Coast neighborhood.
A 36-year-old man was walking home from work around 10 p.m. Sunday, when police say he was robbed and attacked by anywhere from 10 to 20 people. The man was taken to the hospital with a head injury, but he was able to walk on his own after the attack.
People living in and near downtown said it seems like every year, when schools let out for the summer, they see an increase in these kinds of mob attacks by teenagers. What they want to see now is a greater police presence on the streets.
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports
Streeterville resident Thomas Traub said when he heard about the Sunday night attack in the neighboring Gold Coast neighborhood, he was “shocked.”
“Things like that don’t happen in this neighborhood, and they shouldn’t happen,” he said. “I’m wondering where all the police are.”
The victim from Sunday’s attack told police had no idea why he was targeted.
The randomness of the attack had many people living in the area worried about their own safety.
“I might be hurt. My wife might get hurt,” Traub said.
Police said Sunday’s victim was not robbed, but at least two other victims were robbed during attacks and muggings downtown on Saturday.
When a group of people attacked two men in the 500 block of North State Street shortly before 10 p.m., one victim was left with a broken jaw, the other suffered a cut lip.
The suspected muggers were in a group that fled southbound after the attacks, Mirabelli said, but officers were able to catch up to the group on Kinzie Street between State Street and Wabash Avenue. Ten people were arrested.
One adult – 18-year-old Mitchell Coradarrowe, of the 5900 block of South Indiana Avenue – was charged with felony mob action and aggravated battery. Seven others, ages 13 to 16, were charged as juveniles with felony mob action.
A second attack reportedly happened about 10:30 p.m. Saturday at the State/Lake Red Line subway station, when a mob attacked a couple near the Chicago Theatre. No one was arrested in that attack.
“We break them up. There are things that we can do. We use the broken windows theory, which is taking care of the little things prevents the big things. And again, I want to differentiate the gunfire that’s been happening – the gang-related violence – from anything that’s happening downtown as far as robberies go,” he said.
The arrests in Saturday’s first attack did little to provide comfort for many people living downtown, who said more needs to be done to curb the violence.
One woman, who asked that her name not be used, said there are times she’s afraid to walk in Streeterville. She said mob-style attacks are especially troubling for people who walk alone.
“It definitely can escalate quickly if you even dare talk back, or put up any sort of resistance with that mob mentality,” she said. “You’re outnumbered. It’s just not wise.”
Traub said he’s feel safer if there was more of a police presence in the neighborhood.
“For the time being, a policeman on every corner,” he said.
McCarthy said there were similar mob attacks last summer, and his department was able to get the problem under control. He said he believes they’ll be able to do it again this year, and it’s a matter of making sure his officers are where they’re supposed to be, to prevent these incidents from happening.
A handful of other incidents were also reported over the weekend. Just before 9 p.m. Saturday, a “large fight” broke out in front of the John Hancock building, police said. No injuries were reported, and officers made no arrests.
On Sunday, police swarmed to the North Avenue Beach after reports of fighting. Police say a small fight escalated into a larger one around 6 p.m.
The beach was closed soon afterward. At the time, there were no lifeguards on duty.
The latest incidents bring back some bad memories for Chicagoans from around this time last year, when series of mob attacks in and around the downtown area left several people injured.
Among the most high-profile incidents were a pair of attacks by mobs in Streeterville – one on a man who was parking his scooter in the 300 block of East Chicago Avenue, the other of whom was assaulted while riding his bicycle at Lake Shore Drive and Huron Street.
Less than a week later, two teens were attacked by a large mob of teens at Chicago and Wabash avenues in a fight that began at the Oak Street Beach. The attack shocked and terrified many people on the street corner.
Also last summer, the developmentally disabled brother of Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan was attacked by a mob while riding the CTA Red Line subway near Chicago Avenue.
Violent attacks by teen mobs also made headlines elsewhere in the country last year. In one headline-grabbing incident, 24 teens were arrested after violent mob attacks marred the Wisconsin State Fair in suburban Milwaukee.