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Police investigate 7-hour spate of crime in Aurora

Police are investigating a seven-hour spate of crime Saturday — involving two people shot, three stolen vehicles and a robbery — in west suburban Aurora.

About 5:30 p.m., officers responded to the 400 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, where a 13-year-old girl, two 14-year-old girls and two teenage boys reported an armed robbery, according to a statement from Aurora police. The group was walking when a green minivan sped up, stopped nearby and a man armed with a handgun and wearing a bandana over his face got out and demanded their property. One of the boys handed over some jewelry and the robber jumped back in the vehicle, which sped away west on Plum Street.

One of the 14-year-old girls was treated at the scene for a minor injury to her leg, which she suffered when she was struck by the minivan when it approached, police said.

A few minutes later, an officer spotted the minivan stopped at a red light, westbound on Illinois Avenue at Randall Road, police said. The driver sped away, and the officer pursued at a high rate of speed. During the chase, the minivan disregarded several traffic control devices and the pursuit was deemed unsafe and subsequently terminated.

The minivan then boxed in a Ford Taurus near Route 56 and Interstate 88, police said. Four people, two of whom were armed, jumped out of the van and ordered the 63-year-old man driving and his 61-year-old girlfriend passenger out of the vehicle. The couple, who were not injured, complied and the four people sped away in the Taurus, westbound on Route 56.

About 5:50 p.m., the Taurus rear-ended a vehicle at Prairie Street and Edgelawn Drive, police said. The 68-year-old woman driving the vehicle, the only occupant, was not injured in the crash and the Taurus sped away.

Within 3 minutes of the crash, the Taurus was abandoned near Lake Street and Ridgeway Avenue, police said. At least three people ran away from the car, but a search of the area did not turn up any of the suspects. It was later learned that the minivan was reported stolen between 9:30 p.m. Friday and 12:10 p.m. Saturday from the 600 block of Gate Avenue, when the owner left the unlocked vehicle parked in the street with the keys in the cup holder.

About 11 p.m., officers responded to the 100 block of North Ohio Street, where two people approached a group sitting in an outdoor common area, opened fire, yelled a gang slogan and then ran to a Jeep Wrangler, which sped away, police said. A 10-year-old boy, who was sitting at a picnic table at the time, suffered a graze wound to the head and was treated and released at the scene.

Less than 10 minutes later, suspects matching the same description and driving a Wrangler were involved in a shooting in the 1300 block of Plum Street, police said. A 52-year-old man had just backed his car out of a friend’s driveway when the Wrangler approached and an argument ensued. The Wrangler crashed into the car head-on and the man and his 49-year-old friend then approached the Wrangler, and one of the Wrangler’s occupants pulled out a gun and opened fire.

The 49-year-old was shot in the neck and taken to an Aurora hospital, police said. He was later airlifted to a suburban hospital, where his condition was stabilized. He was expected to survive.

The suspects in the Wrangler also fired shots at an SUV that was driving west on Plum Street, police said. The vehicle, which carried five juveniles, was struck twice, but no injuries were reported. The suspects then abandoned the Wrangler and ran away from the scene northbound. It was later learned the Wrangler was reported stolen about 10:30 p.m. Saturday from the 600 block of High Street, when the owner of the vehicle parked it on the street and left the keys in the ignition.

Anyone with information on any of the incidents is asked to contact Aurora police at (630) 256-5500 or Aurora Area Crime Stoppers at (630) 892-1000. Callers to Crime Stoppers are anonymous and qualify for a cash reward of up to $5,000 for information that leads to any arrests.

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