Woman thought she would be killed when machete-wielding robber confronted her in Avondale



CHICAGO (CBS) — Police believe the same person is responsible for at least eight armed robberies involving a machete in Northwest Side neighborhoods. 

The attacks have happened in Irving Park, Avondale, and Logan Square. 

CBS 2’s Charlie De Mar spoke exclusively to one woman – who said she thought she was going to die when she saw the size of the machete pulled on her. She complied with the robber’s demands and wasn’t hurt – but the randomness of the attacks is concerning for those on the Northwest Side.   

Maria Mayancena pointed to the spot on a sleepy Avondale block where she was robbed while walking alone Friday night.   

“Maybe here, a very large machete,” she said.

A car pulled up around 9 p.m., and a man got out and pulled a large machete on her. She is still shaken.  

“I don’t know,” Mayancena said.

Mayancena handed over her belongings. The man got back in the passenger seat of a car, and they drove away.

In Spanish, Mayancena said: “I thought he was going to kill me with the machete. I didn’t want him to do anything to me.  I let him take the money.  I let him take the bag. ”

The most recent attack happened on Sunday night, when a 52-year-old man was walking alone near Troy and Grace streets in Irving Park with a pizza when a machete was swung at him – causing him to fall. Police say the attacker also jumped out of a waiting car.

The man’s wallet and the pizza were stolen. CBS 2’s Tara Molina spoke to the victim’s girlfriend.

“He came with the machete,” the victim’s girlfriend said. He told him, he told him give me your money.” 

The incident times and locations are as follows:

·        3000 block of North Christiana Avenue on Friday, May 27 at 7:58 p.m. The machete-wielding attacker approached a 34-year-old man and demanded the victim’s property. The victim handed it over, and the attacker left in a gray sedan.

·        3200 block of North Monticello Avenue on Monday, May 30 at 11:45 p.m. A 19-year-old man was walking on the sidewalk when the man with the machete came up and demanded his property. The victim complied, and the attacker left in a silver/gray sedan.

·        4100 block of West Fletcher Street between Monday, May 30 at 11:45 p.m. and Tuesday, May 31 at 12:10 a.m. A 47-year-old man was walking on the sidewalk when the attacker came up and demanded his property while brandishing a machete. The victim complied, and the attacker fled in the silver/gray sedan.

·        3300 block of North Monticello Avenue on Friday, June 3 at 9 p.m. A woman was walking home when the man approached her, brandishing the machete as he demanded her property. The victim complied, but the attacker then pushed the victim and fled back into the passenger side of the vehicle in which he’d arrived.

·        4000 block of West Eddy Street on Friday, June 3 between 9 p.m. and 9:15 p.m. Two women, ages 22 and 56, were approached by the machete-wielding offender. He demanded both their property and they complied. He fled in the silver/gray sedan.

·        3000 block of Christina Avenue on Saturday, June 4 around 8:20 p.m. A 44-year-old woman was walking when a man came up from behind and got the victim’s attention by speaking. The man ordered the victim to hand over her property, and she complied.

·        4100 block of West Wellington Avenue on Saturday, June 4 just before 9 p.m. A 28-year-old woman was crossing the street with a 7-month-old baby boy when a silver sedan almost hit her. The driver apologized and kept going. The woman and the baby then went into the alley, at which time the silver sedan reversed the vehicle to enter the alley. The driver then waved a sharp object, demanded the victim’s property, and got back in the car and left.

·        3700 block of North Troy Street on Sunday, June 5, around 9 p.m. This was the incident in which the 52-year-old man had the machete swung at him while carrying a pizza.

Avondale resident Lisa Russell, who didn’t want to show her face, says she’s seen the man for whom police are looking.

“I have seen him walking up to a front door and knocking on the door and nobody answered it,” Russell said. “I used to walk to the grocery store, walk to the dollar store. Now I won’t do it. ”

As for Mayancena, she has this message for her attacker. 

“Stop doing what you are doing,” she said in Spanish. “We aren’t harming anyone.  We don’t want any more tragedies to happen. We are out and about and feel scared.”

Police say they have dedicated more resources to the Northwest Side and are focused on making an arrest.  No serious injuries have been reported in any of the robberies.


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