Suspect in multiple North Side robberies wanted police to kill him, authorities say
Feb 22, 2013 (Chicago Tribune - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
A suspect in a string of late-night holdups who was shot by Chicago police as he tried to flee told investigators he wanted to die at the hands of officers because he was upset over a failed relationship, authorities said Thursday.
Jesus Rosas, 23, who was wounded in the arm by an officer as he reportedly drove his SUV toward police, appeared in court with his left arm heavily bandaged.
Judge James Brown denied bail for Rosas, who was charged with armed robbery, attempted armed robbery, aggravated assault to police and attempted murder of a police officer.
According to police and prosecutors, Rosas said he pulled off nearly a dozen robberies because he needed money to woo a love interest who wound up rejecting him.
"He was so distraught, he wanted to kill himself," Chicago police Sgt. Ed Wodnicki said at a news conference at police headquarters. "And he ended up saying in our interrogations that he felt he just didn't have the nerve to do it, so he'd rather just keep doing robberies and let the police kill him."
Prosecutors said Rosas used a replica handgun in nine robberies and two attempted holdups of convenience stores and fast-food restaurants beginning Jan. 29 on the North Side and downtown. Four of the robberies occurred at Subway sandwich shops, while the others occurred at 7-Eleven, Quiznos, Dunkin' Donuts and CVS Pharmacy stores.
Typically, Rosas would walk into a store late at night or early in the morning, pull out the gun and rob the clerks behind the counters, according to the charges. Most of the robberies netted between $40 and $400 in cash, Assistant State's Attorney James Pontrelli said.
In the final heist at about 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, Rosas entered a Subway shop in the 800 block of North State Street dressed in a black hooded sweatshirt, pointed the gun at a female staffer and fled with about $250 from the register, Pontrelli said.
About 20 minutes later, Chicago police officers assigned to a robbery team heard a description on the police radio of a getaway vehicle from a robbery minutes earlier and spotted Rosas' green Ford Explorer westbound on North Avenue in the Wicker Park neighborhood, according to the charges.
Police pulled Rosas over in the night life hub at North and Milwaukee avenues. As officers approached his car, Rosas put his SUV in reverse and drove in the direction of four officers, Pontrelli said. An officer fired one shot that struck Rosas in the arm.
Rosas, of the 10300 block of South Muskegon Avenue, gave police a videotaped statement admitting his involvement in the robberies and to driving his vehicle at the officers, Pontrelli said. All 11 robbery victims also identified him in police lineups as the robber, he said.
Wodnicki said Rosas told police he kept robbing Subways because they made "easy" targets.
"After he had success with one or two, he felt, why mess with success," Wodnicki said.
Tribune reporters Rosemary Regina Sobol and Peter Nickeas contributed.
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