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Pilsen, Little Village, West Loop

Person In Custody After Whitney Young Teacher Carjacked Outside High School

A teenager got into the teacher's car around 8 a.m., took her purse and phone and then stole the car.

Chloe Riley/DNAinfo
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WEST LOOP — A teacher was carjacked in a parking lot at Whitney Young High School in West Loop Tuesday morning.

At 8:10 a.m. Tuesday, the woman was in her car in the 100 block of South Laflin Avenue when a teenager got in on the passenger side, pulled a gun and demanded her possessions, Officer Anthony Spicuzza said.

The woman, in her 30s, got out of the car and the teenager drove away, Spicuzza said.

A person was in custody with charges pending as of Wednesday morning, police said.

According to a letter from Whitney Young Principal Dr. Joyce D. Kenner, the carjacker claimed he was being chased and needed help before demanding the teacher’s phone and purse.

“Thankfully, the teacher was not harmed physically,” Kenner’s letter to students and parents said, adding that the school requested additional police presence before and after school and additional cameras for the campus.

Whitney Young High School is located next to the Chicago Police Dept. Training Division at 1300 West Jackson Blvd. In a statement, a Chicago Public Schools spokeswoman said the district would work with police and the school to keep kids and teachers safe.

“The safety of our school communities is the district’s highest priority and we are grateful the teacher was not physically harmed during the encounter,” CPS spokeswoman Emily Bolton said in a statement. “The district is working with the Chicago Police Department to provide additional vigilance in the surrounding area and ensure all safety measures and protocols are as strong as possible, and the district has made supports available to the teacher.”

In her letter, Kenner urged students and teachers to park in well-lit areas, keep their doors locked at all times, avoid walking to and from your parking space alone if possible, avoid leaving valuables in plain sight inside your car and if you see a stranded stranger, help by calling the police — not stopping.