A man employed as a caregiver by Community Support Services was charged with three felony counts of financial exploitation of a disabled person after allegedly stealing $520 from a safe inside one of the organization’s group homes in the 3800 block of Cleveland Avenue, Brookfield.

Ricky A. Branch, 32, of Bellwood, turned himself into Brookfield police on Aug. 1, a day after he reportedly called police to confess to the theft. In addition to the three felony charges, he was also charged with misdemeanor criminal damage to property. Police described Branch as a caregiver at the home.

Police were called to the home on Cleveland Avenue on the evening of July 27. Another male caregiver reported to a Community Support Services supervisor that someone had broken into the safe, which was kept in a bedroom.

While trying to open the safe with a key, the caregiver reported that the top of the safe came off and it looked as if someone had broken open the back of the safe. The case was handed over to detectives and on July 31, they received a call from Branch, who allegedly told them he had stolen the money.


A Brookfield tavern was burglarized during the early morning hours of Aug. 3, according to police.

The owner of the Cordial Inn, 9200 31st St., reported that two safes were missing and two lottery machines had also been broken into. The safes, one of which contained cash, were taken from an office whose door had been pried open, police said.

The lottery machines also had their cash drawers pried open and an unknown amount of cash was taken. In addition, police also discovered that a video slot machine had been pried open and an unknown amount of cash taken from it.

The offenders gained entry through a window on the west side of the business, according to police.

A resident of the 3400 block of Grand Boulevard, Brookfield, reported to police that some time between July 24 and Aug. 2 someone entered the detached garage through an unlocked door and removed four tires mounted on custom 17-inch Konig rims. The value of the loss was estimated at $928.

The owner of a 1997 Nissan parked in the lot of an apartment building in the 4600 block of Vernon Avenue reported that during the overnight hours of Aug. 3 and 4, someone entered the unlocked vehicle and removed a stereo faceplate from the dashboard.

Mirror, mirror on the car

Two men were charged by Brookfield police on Aug. 9 with multiple counts of criminal damage to property after the pair allegedly ran down several streets, punching out side mirrors on six vehicles.

Police arrested 28-year-old Brookfield resident Charles T. Hyland and 23-year-old Lombard resident Jon C. Mrazek in the 9200 block of Windemere Avenue just before 2 a.m.

Officers were called to the area by a witness, who reported seeing the two strike a 1992 Buick Allure parked in the 4000 block of Madison Avenue and then run northbound on Madison and eastbound on Windemere, punching out the driver’s side mirrors of five more vehicles along the way.

Keep your hands to yourself

A 53-year-old Chicago man was charged with battery after he allegedly grabbed the hand of an 18-year-old Riverside woman and made comments of a sexual nature to her.

Riverside police reported that the teenager went to the 7-Eleven at 2600 Harlem Ave. to buy a newspaper just after 2:30 a.m. on Aug. 5. Alejandro R. Olivo, the store’s night clerk, reportedly grabbed the teen’s hand and rubbed her palm. When she pulled away from him, Olivo would not release her, police said.

When she told Olivo she was buying a paper for the “Love Is” feature, he reportedly responded that “she could cut out that part and not have to pay for it.”

After stating she wanted to go home to bed, the clerk reportedly told her that if she wanted to stay in the store, he could pull out something she could lie down on.

The teen left the store and flagged down a Riverside police officer on 26th Street just west of Harlem Avenue. Olivo reportedly denied making advances to the teen and said he simply shook her hand when she left the store.

These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments from Aug. 1 to Aug. 9 and represent a portion of the incidents to which police responded. Unless otherwise indicated, anybody named in these reports has only been charged with a crime. These cases have not been adjudicated.

– Compiled by Bob Uphues