Two masked men, one of them armed with a handgun entered a North Riverside apartment last week, forced three people to tie themselves up and then stole two cellphones, two flat-panel TVs and a videogame system before leaving. Police were called to an apartment building in the 7800 block of 26th Street just after 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 13.

Here’s the story: Three people were inside an apartment in the building when the doorbell rang. Upon opening the door, two men dressed all in black and wearing ski masks burst into the apartment. One of the men threatened the three occupants of the apartment – one man and two women – with a handgun before ordering them to tie each other up using plastic zip ties.

The men repeatedly asked the whereabouts of someone whom the occupants of the apartment did not know, said police. After taking the cellphones, the two 32-inch TVs and the gaming system, the two offenders left via a rear door, which led to the alley.

None of the victims was physically harmed, said police.

Brookfielder charged with car burglaries

Brookfield resident Kyle E. Gibson, 23, was charged with two felony counts of burglary to a vehicle after police reported finding items from two vehicles in his possession on Jan. 13.

Police were called to the 3600 block of Grand Boulevard at 9:33 p.m. by a resident who said she saw a man inside her vehicle. When she yelled at him, Gibson reportedly walked away, only to be apprehended by police a block away. In Gibson’s possession was a prescription bottle that belonged to the woman and a GPS unit reportedly taken from another vehicle parked in the 3800 block of Arthur Avenue.

Gibson was identified by one victim as the person seen in her vehicle that night, said police. Gibson is being held at Cook County Jail awaiting a Feb. 8 court date with his bail set at $10,000.

Senior scammed out of $1,400

An unknown man scammed $1,400 from an 87-year-old North Riverside woman last week after posing as a roof repairman, police reported.

On Jan. 10, the victim left the North Riverside Jewel-Osco around 2 p.m. and started loading groceries into her car when a man approached and assisted her. After they finished, the victim drove home, where the same man appeared again and spoke to her about the roof of her house.

The man took a ladder from the victim’s garage and climbed to the roof, moving several shingles. The man then came down the ladder and asked the victim for payment.

The woman gave the many an unknown amount of money, but the man asked for more. The victim then gave the man $400 and then wrote a $1,000 check to the man. When she asked him his name, he replied in a fashion she couldn’t understand, so she reportedly handed him the check with that portion blank.

After taking the check, the man told the victim he’d be back the later in the day to begin repairs on the roof. The victim called police when the man didn’t come back by 7:30 p.m.

SUV stolen in North Riverside

A resident of the 8700 block of Cermak Road, North Riverside, reported to police on Jan. 15 that some time between 4 p.m. on Jan. 13 and 11 a.m. on Jan. 15, someone stole his black 1996 Ford Explorer, which was parked at the rear of his apartment building.

According to the police report, the vehicle’s owner told officers that he kept a spare ignition key in the glove box.

Vehicle break-in

A 52-year-old Forest Park man reported to police that between 9 and 9:30 a.m. on Jan. 12, someone entered his 2009 Chevy van, which was parked behind Harris Bank, 9101 Cermak Road.

The driver- and passenger-side locks were punched out and a Dewalt drill and flashlight were missing, along with a bag containing receipts and files.

47 arrests in holiday crackdown

Riverside police made 47 arrests, including five for impaired driving during the department’s holiday traffic enforcement crackdown in December, said Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel on Jan. 11.

Weitzel said that 24 of the arrests came after midnight and that one of the impaired driving arrests resulted in felony charges for the driver.

The holiday enforcement campaign was funded by federal traffic safety grants through the Illinois Department of Transportation’s “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” and “Click It or Ticket” campaigns.

Police did not write any citations related to seatbelt laws during the crackdown, said Weitzel.

These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, Jan. 9 to Jan. 15, 2012, 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