CHICAGO — A federal grand jury has indicted a man on carjacking and firearm charges for allegedly stealing a vehicle at gunpoint in Chicago.
On the afternoon of May 27, 2020, ELIAS QUINONES-FIGUEROA forcibly took a 2008 Chevrolet Tahoe sport-utility vehicle from a victim in the West Town neighborhood of Chicago, according to an indictment unsealed Friday in U.S. District Court in Chicago. Quinones-Figueroa brandished a handgun during the carjacking, the indictment states.
The indictment charges Quinones-Figueroa, 19, of Chicago, with one count of carjacking and one count of brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence. Quinones-Figueroa was taken into federal custody on Friday. He pleaded not guilty at a Friday afternoon arraignment in federal court in Chicago. U.S. Magistrate Judge Sunil R. Harjani scheduled a detention hearing for Oct. 1, 2020.
The carjacking charge is punishably by up to 25 years in federal prison, while the firearm charge carries a mandatory minimum sentence of seven years, which must run consecutively to the carjacking sentence.
The indictment was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Emmerson Buie, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the FBI; and David Brown, Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department. Valuable assistance was provided by the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in bringing these charges. The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Shawn D. McCarthy. The case was investigated by the Vehicular Hijacking Task Force, a multi-agency initiative that includes FBI agents and CPD officers.
The case was brought under Operation Legend, a Department of Justice initiative in which federal law enforcement agencies work in conjunction with state and local law enforcement to fight violent crime. As part of Operation Legend, the Department of Justice significantly increased resources in Chicago to help state and local officials investigate and prosecute violent crime, particularly firearm-related offenses.
The public is reminded that an indictment is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.