The Declining Value of Higher Education: Burglar With Gender Studies Degree Held At Gunpoint by Chicago Resident

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You too can earn a valuable degree in gender and women’s studies at the University of Illinois-Chicago. (photo courtesy Cook County Sheriff)

While they may be highly prized in ivory tower universities, out here in the real world, gender and women’s studies degrees don’t take you far or open many doors to high-paying jobs. Bringing nothing but a gender studies degree to a gunfight also seems like a good way of proving its worthlessness. A Monday evening break-in in Chicago’s Wrigleyville neighborhood was the perfect case for proving that hypothesis.

A homeowner with a surveillance camera system noticed a prowler lurking outside his home. Mr. Homeowner, the proud holder of a carry license, then checked his attached garage. That’s where police say he found 31-year-old Tyler Hamlin.

The armed homeowner held Hamlin — on probation and wanted under two active felony warrants — at gunpoint until police arrived. Given Mr. Hamlin’s history of serial criminal activity and violence, the gun proved a wise decision.

The homeowner, identified as Niko Kara by CBS2 in Chicago said he was the only thing standing between the intruder and Kara’s wife and 2-year-old daughter.

Here’s the story from CWB Chicago . . .

The concealed carry holder received a security alert showing someone was on his porch with a flashlight in the 3500 block of North Fremont in Wrigleyville around 8:30 p.m. Monday…

“[The police] were here in about 45 seconds, and he couldn’t get out of the garage. I was standing in the door,” the homeowner told CBS2 before charges were filed.

Hamlin’s lawyer apparently thought this fact would attest to what a fine, upstanding person his client is . . .

Hamlin’s defense attorney said he has a bachelor’s degree in psychology and gender and women’s studies from UIC. He’s unhoused and unemployed.

The “unhoused” Mr. Hamlin — that’s newspeak for homeless — has quite the criminal history. In 2020, he allegedly tried to skip out on a cab fare, eventually battering the cabbie and an Illinois State Trooper before being arrested. Unfortunately for him, that infraction took place in Will County, south of Chicago where they actually prosecute criminals.

Hamlin blew off his court date on that case and forfeited his bond, resulting in a warrant on the case per the Will County Circuit Court Clerk.

Meanwhile, Cook County prosecutors gave him probation when he pled down an aggravated arson charge — a Class X felony (6 to 30 years in prison) — to a criminal damage to property charge (potentially just a misdemeanor).

And there’s another battery charge in Chicago from April, 2022.

Hamlin is currently being held without bail on the outstanding warrants. How long that will last is anyone’s guess in Chicago’s revolving door criminal justice system. In the mean time, he can regale his cellmates with the finer points he picked up while earning the gender and women’s studies degrees that helped make him the man he is today.



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