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Wicker Park, Bucktown, West Town

Video Shows Men Breaking Into Bourbon, Running Off With The Bar’s Safe

Police detectives published footage of the two burglars on Wednesday on Facebook.

A burglar walks off with a safe in an alley behind a business in the 2000 block of West Division Street.
Chicago Police Department
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WICKER PARK —  Two men were captured on security cameras as they broke into Wicker Park’s Bourbon on Division and eventually walked away with a safe containing cash, according to the owner of the bar and police.

The burglary happened around 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 14, in the 2000 block of West Division Street.

A video of the heist was published on Facebook on Wednesday morning by Chicago Police and has since gotten over 15,000 views.

Bourbon’s owner Joe Lin told Block Club he was at home a block away when he got a call from his alarm company that an alarm had gone off.

“Since I’ve had some false alarms, I wasn’t sure if I wanted police to come since they charge $100 [if they get called over and it’s a false alarm], but I looked at my camera online and saw the guys, basically saw it happening live,” Lin said.

Lin said he rushed over and missed the men by a minute or two but in retrospect is glad that he did not encounter them.

“They could have been armed, there was two of them and one of me,” Lin said. 

The video shows the men entering the 3-story Bourbon building though the roof and crawling through the windows, and then  inside of Lin’s office, also on the third floor.

Lin said there was not much cash in the safe.

“The irony is they went through all that trouble and there was only a few hundred dollars cash in the safe and personal papers. There is a reason I do not bolt the safe to the ground, because there is never much money in it,” said Lin, who estimated the loss to be between $150 and $200. 

He’s more upset over the fact the thieves stole his winter jacket and used the jacket to drape it over the safe. The jacket had sentimental value and was a gift from a friend.

“It’s my favorite jacket, a black bomber jacket with orange lining. It was in my office, waiting for the winter. I don’t know what they think they would accomplish by covering a safe with a small jacket and running down an alley,” Lin said.

Back in 2014 when Bourbon was a bar named the Shambles, before Lin reconcepted the space last year to a Southern-style restaurant and bar, a suspected burglar was unable to break in after hours because he repeatedly pulled on a door that only needed to be pushed.

Anyone who might have information is encouraged to call Detective Mulkerrin at 312-744-8263 and reference case JB-393346, according to the video. Anonymous tips can also be submitted online at www.CPDTIP.com