Commuters waiting on the platform of the Harlem Avenue Blue Line stop on April 25 about 10 a.m. witnessed the chase and arrest of a man by a police officer armed with an assault rifle.

“The police had an assault weapon,” said Jeff, a witness who declined to give his last name. “There were police on the Circle Avenue bridge and [the officer] on the platform told two people to lie down on the platform.”

Police were responding to a call from a 33-year-old woman, who had seen a man, later identified as Calvin Shumate, 53, of Melrose Park, leaning into her vehicle behind a residence in the 800 block of Harlem Avenue, said Forest Park Deputy Chief Tom Aftanas.

“She heard her dogs barking and saw a guy enter her car,” he said. “She yelled at [him] and he took off running toward the train. She tried to follow, walking behind the offender.”

An officer carrying an assault rifle located Shumate on the platform and made the arrest, said Aftanas. The victim positively identified him. Shumate had several items in a bag on his person, including a necklace, earrings, an iPod, sunglasses, a DVD faceplate and a CD case. However, the victim did not recognize any of her property.

Shumate was charged with misdemeanor trespass to auto. Because he had 44 prior arrests and 11 convictions, most recently a drug paraphernalia arrest in Oak Park on April 4, he is being held in Cook County Jail pending a future court date. Shumate has been charged in the past with theft, along with burglary, weapons, sex and drug offenses.

The officer, who carries the AR-15 semi-automatic assault weapon, is highly trained and is a member of the military, said Aftanas.

“If officers are trained in the weapon, they are allowed to carry them,” Aftanas said. “A rifle has better aim. And there is an intimidation factor. They see that they’re going to think twice about running. The officer was by himself on the platform for a while.”

$15,000 divorce cache in the spare tire well

A 46-year-old man from Brookfield driving a 2004 black Ford Excursion was pulled over for a traffic stop around 6:40 p.m. on April 29. Roberto Bonilla was driving with a suspended license following a DUI charge, but when cops performed a custodial pat-down, they discovered a bag in his pocket with $3,389. As police brought him to the station, he inquired repeatedly about what would happen to his car, which was being seized. “I got more cash hidden in there,” he reportedly told officers. In a bag inside the spare tire well, officers discovered $15,000 rubber-banded in $100 and $50 bills.

Bonilla told police he sold used tires and had been keeping a stash of money hidden in his car after his wife filed for divorce a year ago. He said he keeps cash in his car because his home was burglarized.

A narcotic-detecting dog indicated the presence of drugs on the money at the FPPD, but Bonilla reportedly blamed the presence of drugs on the fact that he sells tires at Roosevelt and Independence and works in “black neighborhoods.”

Since he could not provide documentation for the $18,389 he had in his possession and there was an indication of narcotics residue, police seized the money and will hold it until Bonilla’s hearing.

Cash stolen from parked car

A man told police his 2004 Honda Accord had been broken into while parked in the 1100 block of Dunlop sometime between April 25 and 1:30 p.m. on April 27. He said he observed that the glove compartment had been ransacked and told police that three white envelopes, each containing $1,000 in cash were missing.

Beer bottle brawl at Bravo

Police arrived at Bravo (formerly Tonik) at 7246 Roosevelt Road around 2 a.m. on April 28 to find a fight in progress. They arrested Mariza Iazguirre 26, of Berwyn. Musicians performing at the bar told police Iazguirre had slashed another woman in the face with a broken beer bottle. Iazguirre reportedly told police after her arrest, “She got in my face and said to get out of her table, and I was raised to defend myself, so I did.” When asked about the broken bottle, she reportedly said, “I blacked out and when I came to, I was on the floor and I saw the broken beer bottle and I grabbed it and swung at her.” The victim was taken to Loyola Medical Center but declined to press felony battery charges. Iazguirre was charged with battery.

These items were obtained from the records of the Forest Park Police Department, April 24-May 1, and represent a portion of the incidents to which police responded. Unless otherwise indicated, anyone named in the report has only been charged with a crime.

Compiled by Jean Lotus