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Men charged with Hyde Park, Bucktown carjackings of Uber driver, pregnant woman

The Leighton criminal courthouse at 26th and California where Judge Mauricio Araujo was assigned until last year when he was accused of sexual harassment. | Sun-Times file photo.

Three men are facing several felony charges after an Uber driver, a pregnant woman and her husband were carjacked in two separate incidents Friday in Hyde Park and Bucktown.

Cook County Judge Mary Marubio on Sunday denied bail for all three men at their initial court hearing at the Leighton Criminal Court Building.

Though all three are accused in the attack on the husband and wife, only one of the men, 26-year-old Tyran Carter, was involved hours earlier in the carjacking of the Uber driver, according to Assistant State’s Attorney Geetu Naik.

The driver had fallen asleep early Friday in his gray Toyota Prius after making a drop-off, but awoke about 3:15 a.m. to find Carter pointing a handgun at his face through an open driver’s side door while another attacker, who hasn’t been arrested, stood near the passenger door, Naik said. After Carter ordered the 27-year-old driver out of his car, the other suspect took the man’s car keys and gave them to Carter.

As Carter sat in the driver’s seat, the Uber driver used a pen to stab the other suspect in the face and then ran away, Naik said. Both suspects drove away in the Prius and weren’t initially caught.

About five hours later, Carter pulled up in the Prius in front of a Bucktown home in the 1700 block of North Wolcott, Naik said. In the Prius with him were 20-year-old Terronde Gordon, 21-year-old Dwayne Liberty and possibly a fourth person who hasn’t been arrested, according to Naik. It wasn’t clear if this was the same suspect involved in the carjacking of the Uber driver.

While the fourth suspect stayed in the Prius, Carter, Gordon and Liberty were all armed with guns when they walked up to the 33-year-old husband and wife and ordered them to the ground, Naik said. The woman, who was eight-months pregnant, told the trio that the keys to the couple’s white Range Rover were in her purse.

After searching the purse and the man’s pockets and work bag, Gordon and Carter got into the Range Rover and drove away, Naik said. Liberty ran to the Prius and got into the back seat before it also took off. Two cell phones and several credit cards were among the stolen items.

Paramedics took the woman to the hospital after her husband called 911, but neither was hospitalized. The husband then found the location of the Range Rover by logging into an account connected to the car’s GPS, Naik said.

Officers later found and started pursuing the Prius while surveilling the Range Rover, Naik said.

The Prius crashed during the chase, and Carter, Gordon and Liberty all got out and ran away, Naik said. They were all arrested in an alley after a short foot chase near 97th Street and Wallace.

The items stolen from the couple in the garage were found in the Prius, Naik said. In addition to surveillance footage showing all three men wearing the same clothes during the carjacking as when they were arrested, the woman identified Carter as one of the attackers in a photo array, and her husband identified Carter and Liberty.

Carter, a father of two children and a resident of the South Side Stony Island Park neighborhood, faces three felony charges each of aggravated vehicular hijacking and armed robbery with a firearm, court documents show. Gordon, of the Gresham neighborhood, and Liberty, a Jeffery Manor resident, were both charged with two counts of armed robbery and one of vehicular hijacking. Gordon has three children, and Liberty has one child and is expecting another.

Carter had been discharged from parole in March on a 2016 gun possession case in which he was sentenced to two years in custody, prosecutors said. Liberty was discharged from parole in May after a stolen motor vehicle conviction. Gordon was on bond in a possession of a stolen motor vehicle case when he was arrested, according to prosecutors.

All three men will remain jailed until their next court appearance on Friday.