Driver in North Center shooting was arrested after running into restaurant where Chicago police officers were eating, prosecutors say

The 19-year-old was allegedly driving a stolen Porsche when shots were fired at the driver of another car Tuesday.

SHARE Driver in North Center shooting was arrested after running into restaurant where Chicago police officers were eating, prosecutors say
At least 26 people were shot in Chicago in the first night of the weekend.

Sun-Times file

A suspect in the shooting of a driver on the North Side was arrested after crashing his stolen Porsche and running into a restaurant where Chicago Police officers were eating, prosecutors said Thursday.

The incident unfolded around 2 p.m. Tuesday when Alexandru Mihai, 19, slowed down in front of the other driver, who swung around the Porsche to turn left onto the 4200 block of North Western Avenue, prosecutors said.

Surveillance video shows Mihai then sped up to the car and pulled alongside it while his passenger opened fire. The driver suffered a gunshot wound to the arm.

Minutes later, officers spotted the Porsche and began to chase it, prosecutors said. Mihai kept driving and crashed a mile away at Giddings Plaza in Lincoln Square. A witness took photographs that allegedly show Mihai getting out of the driver’s seat.

Mihai ran through Garcia’s Restaurant on Lincoln Avenue, where several Chicago police officers were eating, prosecutors said. The officers chased and arrested him, recovering three key fobs to other cars and a bottle of codeine.

The alleged shooter escaped down an alley.

Prosecutors did not say why Mihai’s passenger opened fire four times at the 25-year-old driver, who claimed he had no prior interaction with Mihai or the passenger before the shooting.

“It’s a miracle the driver was simply struck in the arm and no one else was harmed,” Judge Mary C. Marubio said.

Police found two handguns in the Porsche, prosecutors said. The car had allegedly been stolen earlier this month from a driveway in west suburban Aurora. The car was fitted with dealer plates that were also allegedly stolen.

Officers found four shell casings at the crime scene, prosecutors said. There were three bullet holes in the driver-side door of the victim’s car.

Mihai lives with his mother on the North Side, his defense attorney said. The attorney said it was a stretch to charge his client with attempted murder since he wasn’t the shooter.

Marubio disagreed, noting that he allegedly sped up and chased the victim’s car.

“He is a full participant based on ... the evidence before me,” Marubio said.

Mihai faces a count each of attempted murder, possession of a stolen vehicle and a felony drug possession.

Marubio ordered him held without bail and set his next court date for Sept. 1.

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