Cell phone robbers target people in the South Loop

CHICAGO, Ill. -- Police say over several weeks in late august and early september, there have been a series of similar robberies at or near some of Chicago’s signature locations.

It’s the perfect place for a picture, selfies, snapshots – and smart phones.  Because of that, Chicago police say Buckingham Fountain has also been a focus of crminal activity.

Police say at least two men may be responsible for three similar armed robberies around the fountain, South Michigan Avenue and around the Museum Campus.

Police say the crimianls use a semi-automatic handgun and demand wallets, purses and cell phones.

They are also going the extra step, of forcing their victims to enter their pin numbers in the phones and reset them to “factory status.”

Then they demand bank cards and pin numbers.

Police are warning residents and tourists alike to ‘watch their backs,’ even as they’re looking at some of Chicago’s most famous attractions.

The police are reminding people – especially vistors to places like Buckingham Fountain to be aware of their surroundings – and use common sense.

They haven’t made any arrests in these robberies so far.