In the past two weeks I have heard from two different CTA Tattler readers about having their pants sliced on the Red Line and wallets taken by a late-night pickpocket as the victims snoozed on their way home.
This is a very common ploy. Pickpockets roam train cars late at night looking for passed-out potential victims. Then they slice and dice and make off with a wallet.
But this crime is easy to avoid. Just stay alert and stay awake.
The victim pictured above told me that the day after the incident, "I checked my CTA Card usage online, and the guy got on the train six times between 2:30 am and 4:50 am, all at North/Clybourn, Chicago (Red), and Fullerton."
That doesn't surprise me at all. After all he was looking for more victims.
Really folks. Let's be more careful out there. In 2010, pickpocket crimes on the CTA in Chicago have jumped by almost 16% in 2010 vs. 2009, through August. According to EveryBlock.com Chicago police crime stats, there have been 464 reported incidents in 2010, vs. 401 in 2009.
But pickpocket thefts on buses are now equaling the rate on trains, after a huge 54% increase in bus pickpockets this year. So keep your guard up wherever you are riding.