Cops make arrest in Blue Line robbery

A man arrived at the Forest Park police station around 3 a.m., April 12, with obvious injuries, including a swollen black right eye. He told police when he exited in Forest Park, he was followed by a group of men who attacked him, beating him around the head and body causing him to lose consciousness. The offenders then took the victim’s backpack which contained a UIC laptop computer and immigration papers. Offenders also reportedly took the victim’s iPhone 5, wallet and credit card. 

Police, watching video footage from the date, identified the offender as Carl S. Cruz, 20, of Chicago, whom they arrested, May 3, in Chicago. He admitted to robbing the victim of all items mentioned, beating the victim and leaving him unconscious on the ground bleeding from his wounds. However, he said he himself was robbed of the items the following day. The assistant state’s attorney approved felony robbery charges for Cruz, as well as a misdemeanor charge for battery. 

Texting driver nabbed with pot

Forest Park police curbed a 29-year-old Chicago man they observed texting while driving his 2005 Infiniti in the 1500 block of Marengo Avenue around 5:45 p.m., April 28. When the officer approached, he noticed a strong odor of burnt cannabis emitting from the vehicle. Police recovered a heat-sealed packet containing four clear plastic baggies full of a green leafy substance, which later was confirmed to be marijuana, and a glass pipe. The total weight was 17 grams. 

‘I got a warrant’

Police curbed a 2000 Chevy Express at York Street and Desplaines Avenue and the driver, a 35-year-old man whose hometown was not provided, began to cry in the driver’s seat saying all he wanted to do was go see his baby at the cemetery. He acknowledged he was not in possession of his license, which had, in fact been revoked for DUI, and then he blurted out, “Well, you might as well lock me up ’cause I got a warrant.” Police brought him to the station where it was confirmed he had an outstanding Cook County Sheriff’s warrant. Records showed he had 17 convictions after having his license revoked for DUI. Charges were approved by the assistant state’s attorney for felony aggravated DUI. 

Pedestrian target practice

A 41-year-old North Riverside woman, driving a 2008 Nissan, was issued a local ordinance citation after she blew through a pedestrian crossing on Madison Street around 8 p.m., April 30. A group of walkers were unable to cross and had to step back in order to avoid begin struck at the intersection of Thomas and Madison. When she was curbed and asked why she didn’t stop, she said, “I didn’t even see them.” She was issued a local ordinance citation. 

Wedding ring removed from garage

A 32-year-old man from the 1100 block of Harlem Avenue came to the Forest Park police station and reported his garage door had been left open, possibly by a neighbor, overnight April 15-16. When he went to his car in the morning, he reported missing a jewelry box containing his wife’s wedding and engagement rings, a men’s Movado watch, a gold necklace and miscellaneous costume jewelry. He also said a suit bag was ransacked. Loss was estimated at $4,000. He wanted to report the burglary for insurance purposes. 

Sleeping, showering in empty house

A neighbor in the 200 block of Elgin Avenue noticed the recently purchased house across the street had a broken window on the front porch, with curtains flapping, around 9 a.m., April 30. Knowing the new owners had not yet moved in, the neighbor summoned police. When cops arrived, they observed a figure moving around in the living room. Police saw a man’s face at the window and drew their weapons, telling the man to lie down on the floor. He complied. The 26-year-old Maywood man said he was alone and could not remember how he ended up in the house after starting the previous evening at the Short Stop Lounge on Madison Street. 

Police found a wet towel on the ground and water in the bathtub, as well as a wet pair of men’s grey Haines boxer-brief underwear. Drops of blood were on the bathroom floor. A drop cloth was moved from a couch in the living room and pillows had been moved on the couch. The man said he woke up on the couch around 8:30 a.m. and knew he “wasn’t supposed to be here.” He was charged with criminal trespass and criminal damage to property.

Dog drop leads to ticket

A woman told police she observed a black Lexus SUV parked with the rear hatch/tailgate open in the 7800 block of Van Buren Street around 1:20 p.m., May 1. She observed a black, curly haired, medium-size dog let loose, who defecated on the grass and ran back to its middle-age female owner. The owner allegedly did not pick up the dog poop and the witness copied the license plate of the Lexus and called police. When police caught up with the owner, she said she was going to drop off rugs to be laundered and had opened the rear hatch of her vehicle by accident. She said her cocker spaniel had jumped out and left a token, but she did not have any bags to pick it up. She was issued a local ordinance citation for failure to remove animal excreta. The witness, when informed, said she would be sure to be in court for the dog-owner’s hearing. 

Battery on the CTA

A CTA security guard said she rattled her keys to wake up a sleeping, intoxicated passenger at the 711 Desplaines Blue Line terminus around 8 a.m., May 3. When he woke up, he began kicking and striking her in the right knee, causing bruising. The 56-year-old victim said she knew the 49-year-old Chicago man from previous encounters, but he had never become “physical” before. The assistant state’s attorney declined to approve felony battery charges without video of the event, so until that video was obtained, the man was charged with criminal trespass to state-supported land and battery.

These items were obtained from the records of the Forest Park Police Department, April 29-May 2, 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

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...

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