A 25-year-old man, first believed to be the victim of a hit-and-run in the 1100 block of Dunlop Avenue in Forest Park on Nov. 15, may have accidentally fallen out of a vehicle during a high-speed police chase through the village’s south end, according to police.
The subject, who has been uncooperative with police investigating the incident and who sustained non-life threatening injuries, was not charged with a crime because there’s no way for police to know definitively that the man was a passenger in the vehicle, said Police Chief Tom Aftanas.
According to the police report, the chase started about 11:20 a.m. when an officer on patrol observed a blue 1995 Oldsmobile Cutlass traveling about 50-60 mph while southbound in the 500 block of Harlem Avenue.
The officer, who was headed northbound did a U-turn and began trying to catch up with the vehicle, which accelerated to speeds between 70 and 80 mph before turning west on Fillmore Street, blowing through all stop signs as it sped away.
Police lost sight of the vehicle, but a witness pointed out the vehicle’s direction of travel. The car was last seen speeding northbound on Desplaines Avenue.
Just as police lost sight of the car, someone called 911 to report a hit-and-run involving a pedestrian in the 1100 block of Dunlop Avenue. Emergency personnel responded to the location and found a 25-year-old Chicago man lying on the ground under the rear of a parked vehicle.
Lying next to the man, who had visible head injuries, was a black half-face ski mask. Paramedics concluded his injuries weren’t consistent with being hit by a vehicle. Instead, all signs pointed to the subject having fallen out of a vehicle while it was moving.
Paramedics took the subject to Loyola University Medical Center for treatment. According to Aftanas, he has refused to cooperate with police.
Meanwhile, police reported observing car parts, including some lettering and a hubcap, next to a dumpster in the alley behind The Golden Steer, 7635 Roosevelt Road.
Around 11:40 a.m. police located an unoccupied blue Oldsmobile parked but running in the driveway of a home in the 500 block of Hannah Avenue. The vehicle’s driver’s side was damaged and it was missing a hubcap. The hubcap found in the alley matched the ones remaining on the vehicle, police said.
In addition, they said, the vehicle’s steering column had been peeled as if it had been stolen. Police confirmed later that it had been stolen in Chicago earlier that day. At the time of the Forest Park incident, the vehicle’s owner didn’t know the car was missing, police said.
Police also located a lighter, some gloves and another black half-face ski mask in the 500 block of Thomas Avenue, indicating that the offenders fled westbound on foot.