North Riverside police charged two Chicago men apparently involved in a retail theft ring with identity theft and forgery after they allegedly used phony credit cards bearing the names of real people to purchase thousands of dollars in merchandise from local stores.

Shawn McGee, 42, is in Cook County Jail being held without bond for allegedly purchasing $6,100 worth of merchandise, including a $2,700 70-inch flat-panel TV and a $2,200 speaker system at H.H. Gregg on Nov. 28.

Police reported finding the receipt for the merchandise in McGee’s pocket after he and the other man, James Riley, 49, were apprehended inside the North Riverside Park Mall at about 3:30 p.m. that afternoon. Riley is being held at Cook County Jail on $50,000 bond.

An employee of a North Riverside Park Mall jewelry store called police after growing suspicious when Riley came into the store on Nov. 28 to open an in-store credit account. The employee recognized Riley from a transaction completed on Nov. 22 when Riley reportedly used McGee’s name – which was different from the name he gave her a week later – to open an in-store credit account to buy more than $8,000 in jewelry. McGee was reportedly in the store with Riley on that occasion, police said.

In addition to the receipt in McGee’s pocket, police also reported recovering the merchandise purchased fraudulently from H.H. Gregg inside a 1995 Dodge Caravan registered to Riley, which was parked in the mall lot. An employee at H.H. Gregg positively identified Riley as the man helping McGee load merchandise from that store into the van.


Half-naked woman on Ogden

Brookfield police charged a 27-year-old Lyons woman with two counts of battery to a police officer after she kicked and scratched at two police officers who attempted to get her medical attention after she was found wandering with no pants or underwear on along Ogden Avenue on Dec. 3.

A man called police at 3:24 a.m. reporting a half-naked woman walking eastbound on Ogden Avenue in the 9200 block. Police minutes later found the woman, wearing only a gray fleece top, being escorted out of the Mobil gas station, 9137 Ogden Ave., by an employee of that business.

Police said the woman appeared incoherent and intoxicated. Officers called paramedics to take her to the hospital for medical treatment, but she allegedly became uncooperative and started swinging her fists, kicking and attempting to bite the officers. In the hospital emergency room, the woman had to be handcuffed to the bed, because she reportedly continued to be combative.


North Riverside home break-ins

A home in the 2200 block of 8th Avenue, North Riverside, was burglarized between 3 and 9 p.m. on Dec. 3, North Riverside police have reported.

According to the police report, a bedroom was ransacked, though nothing of value was stolen from the dresser drawers. Several videogames were reported to be missing from another bedroom.

While police found a bedroom window broken out, it did not appear to be the point of entry for the burglar, since it appeared to have been broken from the inside and there were no footprints in the muddy area outside the house.

 The owners of a home in the 2400 block of Park Avenue, North Riverside, reported Sunday that someone had gained entry to their home between 7 p.m. on Dec. 2 and 10 a.m. on Dec. 4.

The owners returned home to find the rear door open. Police reported that someone appeared to have taken a large landscaping stone from a planting bed and used it to force open the door, which gave access to the home’s basement. Entry was not made to the main part of the house, police said, although an attempt was made to kick in the kitchen door. Nothing appeared to be missing from the home.


Tobacco compliance checks

During a tobacco compliance sweep by Brookfield police on Nov. 28, a 16-year -old female agent for the police department attempted to purchase cigarettes at all 19 retail establishments that sell tobacco in the village.

She was turned away at all but one business, Leo’s Liquors, 9154 Broadway Ave. According to the police report, the cashier asked the girl for ID, which showed her to be 16 years old. The cashier was ticketed by police for the sale of tobacco to a minor.


These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, Nov. 28 to Dec. 4, 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