At the start of what turned out to be a substantial drug bust at a Harlem Avenue gas station, a Forest Park police officer pointed his gun at the driver of a white pickup truck who appeared ready to run the officer down, according to a police report.

At about 7 p.m. on July 22 a patrolling officer spotted a 1994 Ford van parked along a fence at the Mobil station at 949 Harlem Ave. just as a Dodge truck pulled alongside the van. Because of the “history of drug activity” at the address, the officer used his car to block the van in. The driver of the truck, 22-year-old Luis E. Sanchez, “had a scared look on his face” and began driving toward the officer, according to the report.

“Fearing for my safety I drew my weapon and aimed it at Sanchez, advising him to stop his vehicle or I would fire,” the officer said in his report.

A search of the two vehicles and the occupants turned up more than $1,500 in cash and two bricks of marijuana weighing more than one pound each, along with several smaller quantities of the drug, according to police.

Sanchez, a Berwyn resident, is charged with a felony count of manufacturing and delivering marijuana for allegedly having both bricks in his Dodge pickup. He also faces a felony drug possession charge.

Jamall L. Banks, 33, of Chicago, is facing a single felony charge for attempted possession. Banks, a passenger in Sanchez’s truck, was allegedly found with $1,400 cash in his pocket.

Derrick N. Lusk and Delvera Thrasher, both of Chicago, were taken into custody but released without charges.

Suspect demonstrates crime

A resident of the 400 block of Harlem Avenue was charged with domestic battery on July 17 for allegedly striking his wife at about 10 p.m. that evening.

According to a police report, Daniel J. Thurman, 48, called police to his home and asked that they remove his wife’s ex-husband from the premises. Police, however, discovered the woman did not want her ex-husband to leave and said he was there watching his children. At this point she told authorities that Thurman, whom she accused of being drunk, struck her about an hour ago.

In response to the accusation, Thurman allegedly demonstrated to police how he repeatedly batted his wife on the top of the head in an “insulting and provoking nature.”

BAC says twice legal limit

A Chicago man was arrested for drunk driving, among other traffic violations, after police allegedly watched him swerve in and out of his lane on Harlem Avenue at about 2:30 a.m. July 21.

Keith E. Manning, 35, had a blood-alcohol level of .17, according to the results of a breathalyzer administered at the police station, police said. The legal limit in Illinois is .08.

In attempting to pull his 1998 Oldsmobile Aurora to the side of the road, Manning first stopped in the middle of the traffic lane, according to police. He then fumbled with his wallet when the officer asked for his driver’s license and twice handed the wrong card to the officer.

In addition to driving under the influence, Manning is charged with improper lane usage, driving with an expired registration and not carrying insurance.

Heavy load results in fines

A business owner in Markham was issued more than $6,000 in fines after authorities discovered one of his dump trucks to be “severely overweight.”

Driver Kevin Greenleaf of Chicago was ultimately allowed to continue on his way to the dumping site after police received assurance that the $6,665 in bonds and fines would be paid the following day. Greenleaf was pulled over shortly after 1:30 p.m. on July 19 after police noticed the vehicle’s tires were quite depressed and the truck had to cycle through several gears in an effort to pick up speed after stopping at the intersection of Roosevelt Road and 1st Avenue.

Using a special scale that measures the load on each axle, police found the truck to be 27,100 pounds over its allowed gross weight of 72,000 pounds.

The infraction will cost the trucking company $5,255, according to the department report. A registration violation also resulted in $1,410 in fines.

The dump truck was overloaded with wet sand, crushed asphalt, liquid cement and mud. The vehicle is owned by KLF Trucking.

Too many decibels

Two Oak Park residents were cited in the last week for playing their car stereos on Forest Park’s streets at a volume in excess of that permitted by a local ordinance. Shortly before 3:30 a.m. on July 23 Daniel F. Kennedy, 24, could be heard traveling the 400 block of Marengo Avenue by a patrolling officer who was some 250 feet away.

Stereos should not be audible from 50 feet, according to the ordinance.

At 1 p.m. on July 21, 24-year-old Neils K. Gudell’s stereo could be heard from more than 100 feet away, according to police.

These items were taken from the records of the Forest Park Police Department between July 16 and July 23, 2007 and represent only a portion of the incidents to which police responded. Anyone named in this report has only been charged with a crime. The cases have not been adjudicated.

Compiled by Josh Adams