Loop pickpocket team caught on video, cops say
Chicago police have released surveillance video of a pickpocket theft team working in a major downtown hotel. The footage shows just how quick and sneaky such teams can be.
The video captured images of a two-man team as they targeted a guest at an elevator bank inside Chicago’s Hyatt Regency Hotel, 151 East Wacker, at 3:27 p.m. on Sept. 1, according to police.
One member of the team gets close to a piece of luggage that the victim is pulling behind them. Then, the thief uses a large Staples shopping bag to cover his hand as he removes a wallet or other valuable item from the victim’s luggage.
Once the pickpocket has his grasp on the item, the rest goes off like clockwork: He conceals the stolen property inside the large bag, then backs away from the elevator to create distance between himself and the victim. The elevator doors will soon close. By the time the victim figures out what happened, they will likely be several floors away and the criminal will be long gone.
Police said a second man seen standing near the elevator is part of the team — likely serving as a look-out or causing a diversion.
The men seen in the Hyatt Regency video resemble a two-man pickpocket team that police have warned downtown ‘L’ passengers about twice in the past month.
In a community alert issued Oct. 6, police said the two men seen below had struck repeatedly in the Loop subway system.