Man on the run convicted for Woodridge carjacking - FOX 10 News |

Man on the run convicted for Woodridge carjacking

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WHEATON, Ill. (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

A former nuclear plant engineer who remains at-large was convicted Wednesday of a carjacking, despite not being in custody.

Michael Buhrman, 32, of Coal City was tried on felony carjacking charges even though he disappeared last September while free on bond. DuPage County prosecutors believe he may have fled the country.

A jury found Buhrman guilty of aggravated vehicular hijacking with a firearm, according to a statement from the DuPage County State's Attorney's office. The jury deliberated for about 45 minutes before reaching a verdict.

A masked Buhrman approached a woman sitting in her parked car in a Woodridge parking lot about 9:55 p.m. on May 9, 2012, pointed a loaded .45 caliber handgun at her head and ordered her out of the car, prosecutors said.

Woodridge police quickly captured Buhrman in a separate parking lot and arrested him still wearing the mask and with the gun on the passenger's seat, according to prosecutors.

Buhrman was initially ordered held on a $200,000 bond and outfitted with a GPS monitoring device upon release, the state's attorney's office said.

He posted the required 10 percent on May 11, 2012, and authorities discovered on Sept. 28, 2012, that he had removed his GPS device and fled.

He vanished after allegedly telling a girlfriend he had collected $100,000 in gold bars and planned to travel to Chile to avoid being prosecuted, court records show.

"Nearly one year ago, Michael Buhrman pointed a loaded weapon at an innocent woman's head and stole her car just for the thrill of it," State's Attorney Robert Berlin said in the statement.

A pre-sentencing hearing will be held May 15.

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