By Nona Tepper
Drugs, cash found after off-duty cop calls in
An off-duty police officer watched a Cadillac weaving erratically near Marengo Avenue and Roosevelt Road about 3:45 p.m. on Feb. 27, then abruptly stopping after being flagged down by a man in a parked Chevrolet, according to a police report. The man exited the Cadillac, handed the Chevrolet driver a box, then returned to his car and exited the area. The off-duty officer called Forest Park police to report suspicious activity.
A police officer arrived on the scene and drove slowly past the Chevrolet, smelling cannabis. The officer circled the block and parked behind the Chevrolet. As he got out of his car, three occupants exited the Chevrolet and attempted to walk away. Police ordered them to return to the vehicle and put their hands on the back of the Chevrolet.
A pat-down of the men uncovered cocaine and $1,105 in cash. Police then searched the Chevrolet and found a bag of suspected cannabis in the center console and a box containing three orange pills and nine zip-lock bags containing suspected marijuana. Officers also uncovered another locked box. After forcing the box open, police found 20 vapor vials containing suspected PCP.
Police transported the offender found with cocaine and cash to the police station. After he exited, another large bag of cocaine was found in the police vehicle.
The man was charged with delivery and manufacture of cannabis over 30g, a felony.
Attempted burglary from a motor vehicle
A man was getting ready for work about 6:30 a.m. when he heard his car alarm go off on the 1100 block of Desplaines Ave. He walked outside and saw the rear window of his Chevrolet broken, according to a police report. Inside the car, it looked like someone rummaged through his vehicle. The man told police he was unsure if anything was stolen.
FedEx truck catches fire at Walmart
Officers arrived about 9:16 a.m. on March 1 at Walmart, 1300 Desplaines Ave., where they saw flames and smoke rising from the engine of a FedEx truck. The driver came out of the store with a fire extinguisher, but police told him to vacate the area. Officers then cleared the rest of the store, and the Forest Park Fire Department extinguished the flames.
The FedEx driver said that when he parked the truck at Walmart about 9 a.m., he smelled "something electrical" and thought it was just an issue with the truck's brakes. A short time later, he saw smoke coming out of the vehicle, and went inside Walmart to get a fire extinguisher.
The fire damaged the truck, but caused no damage to Walmart or other nearby vehicles.
Woman scammed as 'secret shopper'
A Forest Park woman recently fell victim to a "secret shopper" scam. The woman, 48, told police she received an email for a secret shopper job opportunity, filled out an application and was approved for the fake job. According to the police report, she received a cashier's check in the mail for $2,798.98 from Duncan, Arizona. She deposited the check and, following instructions from her fraudulent employer, used the money to buy $2,300 worth of iTunes gift cards from Walmart. She then called the fake company and told them the gift card validation numbers. After that, she received another cashier's check for $3,898.98 with similar instructions. The check was sent from Los Angeles, California. Before she made the purchases, however, the woman learned the first cashier's check was fraudulent. She did not deposit the second check and talked to US Bank, which credited her account with $2,798.98.
She filed a police report on March 1, telling police the fake company keeps texting her, demanding she deposit the check and make additional purchases. Police told her not to respond to the texts.
Pellet gun at St. Patrick's Parade
A Chicago man with a pellet gun rode his bike through traffic in the annual St. Patrick's Day Parade on March 3. Police spotted the man, 33, on a bike wielding a black nylon case commonly used to carry rifles or shotguns, according to the police report. Police stopped him about 1:51 p.m. at the intersection of Van Buren Street and Grove Avenue. The man agreed to let police search the case and, inside, officers found a pellet rifle, two canisters of pellets and a telescopic rifle sight device.
The man told police he had just picked the items up from his brother's house, and planned to take the CTA home. Police advised him not to take the pellet rifle onto the CTA, and the man agreed to let Forest Park police hold the rifle and items for him until he could pick them up at a later date.
These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Forest Park Police Department, Feb.26-March 5, and represent a portion of the incidents to which police responded. Unless otherwise indicated, anybody named in these reports has only been charged with a crime. These cases have not been adjudicated.
Compiled by Nona Tepper