Forest Park police arrested a 31-year-old Chicago woman at the center of an April 16 confrontation at Thorntons gas station, 601 S. Harlem Ave., which was partially captured on video and then went viral.
The clip, which has been widely circulated on social media throughout the Chicago area, picks up with the argument already in progress, and the man recording it wasn’t able to capture some parts of the incident. But according to the video footage and subsequent Forest Park police investigation, the confrontation started with the driver, Kendra Y. Nance, arguing with her boyfriend after they pulled into the gas station. Other customers got involved in the argument, and the situation escalated to the point where Nance hit the car of one of the customers she was arguing with, then as she was headed onto Harlem Avenue, she hit another car which resulted in her car rolling over onto its roof.
Forest Park Police Chief Ken Gross announced on the evening of April 17 that Nance has been charged with felony Criminal Damage to Property, two counts of Aggravated Assault, Reckless Driving, Reckless Conduct, Leaving the Scene of a Motor Vehicle Accident and No Valid Driver’s License. He told the Review that, while Nance was detained shortly after the incident, the police held off announcing anything until they were sure the Cook County State’s Attorney approved some of the more serious charges.
According to Gross, Nance and her boyfriend pulled into Thorntons at around 3:10 p.m. due to car trouble. The couple got into the argument, and other customers chimed in, and soon, Nance was yelling at several customers.
The video picks up mid-argument, catching the back and forth taunting and one of the customers throwing a cup at Nance’s car. Nance got into the car and drove around the gas station. As her boyfriend tried to get her to stop driving, opening the car door, Nance slammed into one of the customer’s cars, dragging her boyfriend for a few feet before driving north on Harlem Avenue as the boyfriend picks himself up and continues arguing with the customers.
What happened next wasn’t caught on video, but according to Gross, Nance then crashed into another car, and her car rolled over. The video captured the immediate aftermath as Nance got out of the turned-over car and mockingly laughed at the man recording the video before heading east.
According to Gross, the couple ran into the alley behind Thorntons, where police officers arrested them.
None of the customers in the parking lot were injured. Both Nance and her boyfriend were treated for their injuries at Loyola University Medical Center, and Nance was arrested.
The video was widely circulated on Twitter and Facebook, with some accounts erroneously saying that the incident happened at an Oak Park/Chicago border. Members of the Forest Park Town Hall Facebook group discussed coming to the regularly scheduled April 18 Forest Park Neighborhood Watch meeting, which was to take place at the Forest Park village council chambers at 7 p.m. But later in the afternoon of April 17, Mayor Rory Hoskins’ office sent out a notice saying that the meeting was cancelled “due to staffing issues,” and that the next Neighborhood Watch meeting would take place on May 16 at 7 p.m. at the regular location.