3 charged in ‘shockingly violent’ armed home invasions in Illinois

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Pitts and Johnson

WHEATON, Ill. (WGN) — A judge denied bond Sunday for two men charged in connection with a crime spree that included two home invasions and a shooting in Illinois last week.

DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said 22-year-old Malik Pitts and 21-year-old Isaiah Johnson face felony attempted murder, home invasion and aggravated battery charges for allegedly forcing their way into homes in Wheaton and Lombard, Illinois, at gunpoint in the early morning hours of Aug. 23.

In each case, prosecutors said Pitts allegedly also tried to sexually assault young girls.

A third man, Keytori Jackson, who is accused of being the getaway driver, is also facing the three felony charges and being held on $500,000 bond.

“In the middle of the night, it is alleged that these three defendants threatened the safety, security and very lives of two unsuspecting, innocent families,” Wheaton Police Chief William Murphy said in a statement. “I can’t begin to imagine the terror the victims must have felt when they were allegedly awoken by the defendants.”

A statement released Sunday outlines prosecutors’ versions of events. They say around 5 a.m. on Aug. 23, family members investigating a noise outside their Wheaton home discovered Pitts and Johnson, who pointed a handgun at them and entered the home.

Once inside, the statement says, Pitts entered a bedroom where two young girls were sleeping and attempted to pull down the blanket and shorts of one and struck their grandmother after she confronted him.

Prosecutors said the girls’ father then fought with Pitts, and Pitts and Johnson fled to a car where Jackson was waiting.

Less than 20 minutes later, prosecutors say, there was a home invasion at a second home in Lombard around 5:22 a.m.

A homeowner there said he was awoken by Pitts and Johnson in his living room, where they pointed a gun at him and asked “Where’s the money?” Afterward, the statement alleges, Pitts went to the upstairs bedroom and ordered their daughter to go to the basement, where he told her to remove her clothes.

The girl managed to flee, the statement said, and the father began a fight with Pitts that led to the backyard. At some point, prosecutors say, Johnson fired at the father’s chest, wounding him, but also striking Pitts as well.

“The conduct alleged in these charges is shockingly violent and demonstrates a complete disregard for our laws and for human life,” Berlin said. “The victims in this case had every right to feel safe in their own home, the one place everyone should feel safe. That sense of safety has now been shattered.”

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