CRETE. — Following an intensive investigation, a Lynwood man has been charged in the wake of a string of armed robberies in Northwest Indiana and Illinois, police said.
Cordairo Mitchell, 30, was charged with two counts of armed robbery and one count of being an armed habitual felon, according to a Crete Police Department news release.
Additional charges against Mitchell or other individuals involved in the robberies are pending at this time as police examine additional evidence, Crete Police Chief Scott Pieritz said.
Mitchell was arrested following a robbery at 6 a.m. Thursday at a Speedway Gas Station at 1120 Main St. in Crete, which was previously robbed. The suspects took cash and cigarettes and left in a dark-colored Dodge Caravan with obstructed license plates.
Pieritz said the robbery appeared to be committed by the same crew that is responsible for 15 gas station robberies across Northwest Indiana and the Chicagoland area over the past several months.
The armed robberies began in October in Northwest Indiana and Will County, Illinois. During this time, there were also several armed robberies in Crete at Speedway and Circle K at 1400 E. Steger Road. Crete police said the suspects matched the descriptions linked to the other robberies.
In each incident, police noted that the suspects wore masks, dark clothes and gloves and also drove stolen vehicles with obstructed license plates. Each time, they took cash and cigarettes before fleeing the scene.
Crete Police Department detectives reached out to nearby police departments and federal agencies for assistance, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms provided resources to the investigation.
Following the Thursday Speedway robbery, police gathered enough evidence to obtain a search warrant at Mitchell’s Lynwood home. Crete police, Lynwood police, ATF agents and the Will County Gang Unit searched the residence and multiple suspects were detained.
Authorities found five handguns, drugs, two stolen vehicles and other evidence. Police said one of the stolen vehicles was the Dodge Caravan allegedly used in one of the robberies.
Cordairo was taken to the Will County Adult Detention Facility and is awaiting a bond hearing.
Piertz thanked the ATF, Will County State’s Attorney's Office, Will County Gang Unit, and Lynwood Police Department.
“A special thank you and recognition to the Crete Police Department Detectives and officers who spent countless hours working on this case," Piertz said. "The wheels of justice are often slow, but working together we can and will bring these offenders to justice.”