Thirty area teenagers were taken into custody last weekend when police raided an alleged underage drinking party on Elgin Avenue. The gathering was hosted by a 17-year-old from Oak Park who, according to police, had broken into his girlfriend’s family’s apartment while they were vacationing.
According to a police report, a total of 35 arrests were made after a patrolling officer spotted a 20-year-old standing in the street with an open bottle of beer during the early morning hours of July 29. While Officer Jose Flores issued a citation to Marcos Rosales, of Chicago, for the ordinance violation, Flores observed upwards of 50 people leaving the home that Rosales had just exited.
When authorities began knocking on the door to the apartment in the 1000 block of Elgin Avenue, Flores said he could see party goers attempting to hide themselves. One suspect, 24-year-old Brennan A. Page, also of Chicago, eventually tried to make a run for it through a rear entrance after he suspected police were no longer outside the door.
A neighboring tenant reportedly told police the occupants of the apartment were on vacation and that “there should be no one inside the residence.”
With four other Forest Park officers assisting, Flores entered the apartment through the rear door that was opened by Brennan and authorities ordered everyone to the floor. Investigators found a window screen in the dining room had been cut.
Jimmie P. Moorehead allegedly claimed responsibility for the property, telling police he was dating the step-daughter of the tenant, both of whom were away on vacation.
“Moorehead stated his girlfriend gave him the keys to the lower basement area where the step-daughter had her room, which was the same place where Moorehead was staying,” Flores stated in his report on the bust.
Police reached the tenant of the property by phone, and, according to the report, he denied ever giving permission for Moorehead to enter the apartment while he was out of town.
“(Name withheld by police) stated Moorehead was indeed his step-daughter’s boyfriend, but he did not give Moorehead permission to be in his residence, much less hold an underage drinking party …,” Flores said in his report.
Thirty-three of the people arrested at the apartment, aged 16 to 21, were cited with local ordinance violations ranging from possession of alcohol by a minor to disorderly conduct. Each was ordered to appear at a Sept. 5 hearing at village hall.
Page was charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor, unlawful delivery of alcohol to minors and obstructing a police officer.
Moorehead is facing charges for criminal trespassing, property damage, unlawful consumption of alcohol and unlawfully permitting a minor to become intoxicated. Both Moorehead and Page are scheduled to appear in Cook County Circuit Court in Maywood on Sept. 11.
None of the people charged in the incident are residents of Forest Park, according to police. Word of the party was spread via text messages and Moorehead was allegedly charging a $5 cover charge. Police recovered more than $265 in cash from the teenager, believed to be profits from hosting the soiree. Officers in neighboring Berwyn were called in to assist with transporting the suspects to the police station for processing.