The Crusader Newspaper Group

Suspects sought in violent crime spree in Hammond, Calumet City

By Eric Horng,

Police are searching for a group of violent suspects wanted for a crime spree of robberies and carjackings in Hammond, Ind., and Calumet City, Ill.

Police released pictures and videos of the group, comprised of four or five males armed with baseball bats and a gun.

Word of their alleged crime spree startled residents in Hammond.

“What do you do when you got five people coming after you? What do you do?” asked Jerry Merrick, Hammond resident.

The spree began around 6 a.m. Tuesday on a quiet residential street in the 5500-block of Alice Street. Police said the suspects, wielding a bat, stole a Toyota Camry from a 67-year-old man. The victim, who works in construction, was meeting his co-worker to head out for a job.

“He give the keys to the car. He say, ‘I don’t care for the car,'” said Robert Orallana, friend of the victim.

From there, police said, the suspects headed to a Calumet City Bank of America where surveillance cameras captured them robbing a woman at a drive-through ATM. Police said the woman was also threatened with a bat.

But police said they were not done. The suspects then returned to Hammond, going to the Horseshoe Casino where they were spotted by cameras entering the parking garage and stealing a black Hyundai Sonata from another man in his late 60s.

The video shows the group roughing up the victim, who said one of the men showed a handgun.

Police said the suspects were spotted one more time after attempting to use stolen credit cards at a Hammond Walmart.

Police are warning residents they could strike again. Anyone who recognizes any of the men captured on surveillance video or in photos should contact Hammond Detective Sgt. John Suarez at 219-852-2981, or by calling 911.

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