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Prosecutor: Teen felt 'guilty' for armed robbery; confessed to store owner, cops

Adrian Marentes / Chicago Police

Adrian Marentes walked into a Back of the Yards grocery store with a friend last year and held up the business, taking $3,000 with him.

But the teenager felt guilty about the Jan. 31, 2014 incident, Cook County prosecutors said.

To clear his conscience, Marentes went back to Willie’s Grocery, 4958 S. Wolcott Ave., two weeks ago and apologized to the owner, Assistant State’s Attorney Sarah Karr said.

The owner did not report Marentes’ confession to police.

So Marentes took matters into his own hands, Karr said.

On Monday, Marentes, who also lives in the Back of the Yards neighborhood, allegedly approached two officers sitting in a squad car.

“I have a confession to make,” Marentes told the officers, according to a police report. “I committed a robbery.”

Marentes, now 18, was arrested after he came clean, Karr said. He had told the officers he felt “guilty” about what he had done, Karr said.

Marentes’ cohort has not been charged.

At the time of the crime, Marentes, then 16, walked into Willie’s Grocery with a black hoodie and a white T-shirt pulled up to mask his face, Karr said.

His friend, also wearing a mask, was armed with a .22-caliber handgun, which he pointed at the female cashier, Karr said.

Marentes allegedly grabbed the money that the cashier took out of the register and put it inside a backpack. Marentes also took the cashier’s cellphone, Karr said.

Marentes, who made a videotaped confession, told detectives he split the money with the friend he robbed the store with, Karr said. He also identified himself in surveillance footage, Karr said.

Marentes was ordered held in lieu of $10,000 bail Thursday for armed robbery.

Judge Peggy Chiampas also ordered him to stay home except for school and work while his case is pending.