A brother and sister from Brookfield will appear before a Cook County judge this morning, charged with felony retail theft and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Michael Kawell, 32, and Lisa Kawell, 27, were charged in the theft of two bottles of vodka from a 31st Street liquor store on June 22. Police apprehended both of them at Pioneer Motel, 8835 Ogden Ave., where they also found evidence of drug use, recovering several used syringes.

According to the police report, the Kawells entered Armanetti’s Liquors, 9034 31st St., on June 22 at about 6:25 p.m. Surveillance video reportedly showed Michael Kawell take two bottles of vodka off the shelf and put them in his waistband. The two then left the store with Lisa Kawell driving a 1991 Buick. An employee gave police a description of the suspects and license plate number of the car, which was registered to Lisa Kawell.

On June 29, police spotted the car in the parking lot of the Pioneer Motel, and officers arrested the Kawells, recovering the shirt Michael Kawell was allegedly wearing on the night of the theft.

At the time of the theft, Michael Kawell was on parole from Dixon Correctional Center. His parole date was May 20. At a hearing last week, a judge set his bond at $100,000. Lisa Kawell’s bond was set at $40,000.

Their older brother, James Kawell is back in state prison after being arrested and charged with home invasion and other offenses by Brookfield police in April. At the time of that arrest, James Kawell also was on parole. In 2003, he received a 14-year sentence for the savage beating of a 30-year-old woman in Lake County.


The owner of a home in the 8500 block of Rockefeller Avenue, Brookfield, reported to police on June 29 that some time in the past two months, someone took a jewelry box from her garage. The box contained five gold bracelets valued at $300 and a gold necklace valued at $800.

Beware the $50 bill

A Broadway Avenue restaurant employee told Brookfield police on June 30 that the week earlier, someone paid for a $2 slice of pizza with a counterfeit $50 bill. The employee was suspicious of the bill and checked it with an anti-counterfeit marker, but it appeared legitimate.

The employee gave the suspect $48 in change and he left the area in a dark-colored vehicle, believed to be a Cadillac, in the company of another man. Only later, did the business discover the bill was counterfeit. Police reported that the money appeared to be two bills glued together.

On the day the Brookfield restaurant reported that incident, two men walked into Dr. Pizza, 8427 Cermak Road in North Riverside, each ordering a slice of pizza. One of the men handed the owner a $50 bill, which the owner suspected was counterfeit. He called police immediately and the suspects fled without the money or the food. They could not be located in the area by police.

Felony DUI

Lyons resident Randy L. Noel, 41, faces two felony counts of driving under the influence after Riverside police responded to a 911 call reporting a possible drunk driver heading south on Woodside Road near Hauser Junior High School on June 30 just before 10 p.m.

Police located the car in downtown Riverside and followed it, reporting that the vehicle was driving in the parking spaces in front of the train station on Bloomingbank Road and crossing the center line at Bloomingbank and Scottswood.

The driver, identified as Noel, reportedly had an open bottle of rum in his pants pocket and two unopened bottles in the car. His blood-alcohol level was reportedly .248, or three times the legal limit of .08.

The Cook County State’s Attorney’s office approved upgrading the DUI charges to felony status since Noel reportedly has at least two other DUI arrests on his record. In addition, Noel was charged with endangering the life of a child since he was allegedly transporting two boys, ages 10 and 13.

These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments from June 28 to July 2 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