Utility-switch solicitors nabbed

Around 4 p.m., Sept. 5, in the 1000 block of Dunlop Avenue, Forest Park police responded to complaints that two young men were going door-to-door for a utility company without permits to do so. An elderly woman said the two, age 18, rang her doorbell and tried to get her to switch utility companies. They reportedly asked to see her Com Ed bill. Police observed another man with a binder in hand on the block talking to a resident. The officer took the man into custody and three other utility company employees appeared at the squad car. The four young men, all 18 from Chicago and Palos Heights, told police their boss at the utility company had dropped them in Forest Park with instructions to solicit for the company. One man told police he was just issued a local ordinance ticket for soliciting without a license in Melrose Park. They were issued citations for soliciting without permits.

Heroin in her purse

Forest Park police observed a white 2006 Kia turning into the lot at Thornton’s gas station, 601 Harlem Ave., around 11:30 a.m. on Sept. 3 with a broken rear-view mirror and a broken driver’s side taillight. Officers discovered via the LEADS computer system that the registered owner of the car had a suspended license. When the driver, a 34-year-old Chicago man, exited the vehicle to fill the tires with air, officers asked him for his license and proof of insurance. Although he said the car was his cousin’s, he too had a suspended license. His female passenger, a 21-year-old Chicago woman, initially gave a false name and ID to officers. Officers observed an open and unzipped black purse on the passenger seat with a large, clear plastic bag containing multiple smaller silver packets containing a white powdery substance, which later tested positive for heroin. Police said the drugs had a street value of $340. Both denied using heroin but were charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver.

Catalytic converter swiped

A catalytic converter was removed from a 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee parked during the day, Sept. 4, in the village-owned Van Buren commuter lot. Estimated damage was $2,300.

Bike stolen from bar employee

He put his bicycle out in back for only a couple of minutes, unlocked by the rear door around 2 a.m., Sept. 5, a Doc Ryan employee told police, but the blue Rally mountain bike disappeared from behind 7432 Madison St. The victim told police he paid $500 for the bike.

An unlocked bike was removed from outside the Walgreens in the 7200 block of Roosevelt Road around 8:40 p.m., Sept. 6. The bike’s owner said he left his unsecured red Schwinn 21-speed bike with new tires, grips and seat outside for only 13 minutes.

Man snoozing in car arrested

Neighbors on the 200 block of Elgin Avenue called police repeatedly about a man who was sleeping in a 1997 GMC Safari on their block. The 50-year-old man, who gave an address in Broadview, was arrested around 3 p.m., Sept. 9, and issued a village ordinance citation for taking up residence in a non-residential area without running water.

A warrant outstanding

Police observed the driver of a 2005 Land Rover with Texas plates traveling southbound on Harlem Avenue near the I-290 expressway exits. The officer curbed the car as the driver attempted to merge into highway traffic around 5:45 p.m., Sept. 6. The 31-year-old driver from Houston, Tex., was found to have outstanding warrants for driving with license revoked out of Winnebago County and transporting a female over state lines for immoral purposes in Chicago in 2013. Police reported the smell of cannabis in his vehicle and a K-9 drug dog alerted police to the presence of narcotics, but no drugs were recovered. He was taken into custody by Forest Park police and held for warrants.

‘Here you go again, Sarge’

A 49-year-old Chicago man, familiar to officers from prior contacts, was observed approaching customers as they entered the CVS pharmacy in the 7200 block of Circle Avenue around 12:30 p.m., Sept. 7. The officer reportedly approached the man and told him not to bother customers and “just leave.” The man agreed to leave, but after walking about five steps, reportedly turned and yelled, “Here you go again, Sarge, always f—— with me. I’m not doing anything! Please stop! You always f— with me.” When told he still needed to leave, he said, “OK, OK, I’ll leave.” He then removed an open 24 oz. can of Natural Ice Beer from his pocket and began to drink it in front of the officer. The man backed away from the officer, reportedly yelling, “Sarge, I promise I’ll leave if you stop! Everytime you see me!” The officer took the beer can from his hand and told him he’d be cited. A glass crack pipe was recovered from his right shirt pocket. He received a local ordinance citation for open alcohol in public.

Scales, baggies and pot recovered

Forest Park police stopped a 2000 Jeep Cherokee driven by a 19-year-old male Forest Park resident with four passengers in the car near the intersection of Circle Avenue and Harrison Street after police ran the registration number through the LEADS computer system and found the driver had an outstanding bond forfeiture warrant from Chicago. When the vehicle was curbed, the officer smelled a strong odor of fresh cannabis coming from the car. All of the car inhabitants denied having any pot. The officer advised the driver of his warrant and ordered him to get out of the car, which he initially refused to do. The officer then opened his door and physically removed him from the car and took him into custody. The other passengers also exited the car, at which time officers recovered 13.4 grams of cannabis in a black/grey Swissgear backpack, along with 94 small zip-lock bags, two scales and two cellphones.

Another passenger, 19, from Forest Park, claimed a backpack containing 1.5 grams of pot and 65 small zip-lock bags. The other three passengers were released without charge, but the two Forest Park residents were charged with possession of cannabis under 30 grams with intent to deliver.

Coffee after church

Police were summoned to Living Word Christian Center in the 7600 block of West Roosevelt Road around 2:30 p.m., Sept. 8. A 21-year-old male from Chicago allegedly threw a cup of coffee at a 48-year-old woman. The woman told police she had driven the 21-year-old from her residence to a church service and then decided to stay for an additional service against the young man’s wishes. The man then threw the coffee at the woman, striking her with “a large amount of the beverage,” police said. The man told police he did it out of anger because the woman wouldn’t drive him home. He was placed in custody and taken to the Forest Park police station where the woman signed a complaint of battery against him.

These items were obtained from the records of the Forest Park Police Department, Sept. 3-8, 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.

Jean Lotus loves community journalism. She covers news, features, two school boards, village council, crime, park district and writes obits for Forest Park Review. She also covers the police beat for...