Skokie police issued a press release stating that they believe they have the “hair salon bandit” in custody on Monday around 9:46 p.m.
Skokie, working in cooperation with other police departments, arrested a suspect they believe is responsible for a recent string of hair salon robberies. The offender is currently being questioned by Skokie police detectives.
It is still in the early stages of the investigation and several detectives from many jurisdictions are following up on numerous investigative leads, police said.
Earlier today, a Great Clips in the Wicker Park neighborhood was robbed around 10:45 a.m. There were also four similar robberies in the Lincoln Park area in recent weeks as well.
The robberies began gaining notoriety after a Hair Cuttery in Fashion Square Shopping Mall, 9442 Skokie Blvd., was robbed on Dec. 27. Since then, there have been 15 to 16 similar robberies, police said.
Authorities say similar robberies have occurred in Bensenville, Lombard, Glen Ellyn and Morton Grove.
"We started locking our doors on Monday," Skokie Hair Cuttery stylist Dyana Kheyo told Patch at the end of January. "We're terrified. Our customers are terrified. They know what's been going on. It's been all over the news."
Skokie police officer Joe Marzigliano said the offender was likely targeting chain hair salons because they are primarily cash businesses.
"No doubt about it, this guy is very bold," Marzigliano said. "He's hitting a few suburbs. It's not just Skokie and Niles."
A witness to a Jan. 23 robbery at a Broadview Hair Cuttery, 118 Broadview Square, told Patch she recognized the suspect from photos she'd seen on TV.
"It was the same guy I saw in the news," stylist Lisa Burke said, in reference to the robber. "It was definitely him."
The North Side cases remained under investigation Monday afternoon, Chicago police representatives said. They didn't confirm a common suspect among them, but weren't ruling it out, either.
"I mean, people want to jump to that," said Chicago Police News Affairs officer Veejay Zala. "It's very possible. But we have to do our due diligence and let the detectives do their jobs. It's a little premature (in the Wicker Park robbery). It just occurred a few hours ago. That's not to say it's not possible. I'm sure the detectives are looking into it."
No further details are being released at this time. However, if new details come in Skokie Patch will update.