Charges were filed Sunday against six individuals for allegedly stealing merchandise from a Glendale Heights Target store.
Aaren Verrett, 41, of the 7400 block of S. Colfax Avenue, Chicago; Matthew Martin, 20, of the 5700 block of Jackson Street, Merrillville, Ind.; Dante Smith, 21, of the 7400 block of S. Colfax Avenue, Chicago; and Terrance Knight, Jr., 18, of the 11000 block of S. Normal Avenue, Chicago; appeared in DuPage County Bond Court Sunday where Judge Timothy McJoynt set bond at $3,000 for Smith and Knight, $20,000 for Verrett and $100,000 for Martin.
The state had asked for a bond of $200,000 for each defendant. Two juveniles have also been charged and will appear at a detention Monday.
All defendants have been charged with one count of retail theft and one count of burglary. In addition, Martin has been charged with one count of aggravated battery, according to DuPage County State's Attorney's Office news release.
On Dec. 4, at about 4:30 p.m., Glendale Heights police responded to the Target store located at 175 W. Army Trail Road for a report of a store employee being struck by an individual who was attempting to steal merchandise from the store.
All six defendants allegedly arrived at the store together in a car driven by Verrett, who parked the car on the side of the store and remained in the car while the other five defendants entered the store.
The defendants went to the back of the store and one of the juveniles and Martin approached the iPhone display where the juvenile allegedly took a wire cutter out of his pocket and cut the security wire that secured an IPhone to the display, the release stated.
An alarm sounded and all the defendants began walking toward the front of the store with the iPhone when the juvenile and Martin were approached by a store employee. Martin allegedly punched the employee in the face while the juvenile returned to the display and cut another iPhone from the display. All defendants returned to the car in which Verrett was waiting and fled the scene, according to the release.
A Glendale Heights police investigation resulted in the vehicle allegedly driven by Verrett being pulled over a short time later by Warrenville police. All six defendants were taken into custody at this time. The value of the two iPhones allegedly stolen is approximately $4,000.
“It is alleged that these six defendants traveled to DuPage County intent on committing a crime,” DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said in the release. “During this holiday shopping season, law enforcement in DuPage County will be on high-alert to protect not only shoppers, but retail workers as well who are putting their health in jeopardy simply by working during the pandemic.”
“I would like to acknowledge the hard work and persistence of the Glendale Heights Police Officers and Detectives who took part in this investigation” Glendale Heights Chief of Police Douglas Flint said in the release.“It was through their professionalism, commitment and dedication to solving this crime that stopped this organized crime ring from committing further acts. I would like to the thank officers with the Warrenville Police Department for listening to our radio broadcast, observing our suspect vehicle and ultimately stopping the vehicle and our suspects.”
The next court appearance for all the defendants is scheduled for Jan. 4 for arraignment.