Cops arrest man with replica gun

Riverside police charged an 18-year-old Brookfield man with disorderly conduct after he allegedly walked past Riverside-Brookfield High School with what looked to be a gun in his hand.

A police officer from Brookfield Zoo first noticed the man, who was walking eastbound in front of the school on Ridgewood Road toward First Avenue about 1:45 p.m. on June 11. That officer contacted Riverside police, who took the man into custody at Park Place and Lincoln Avenue.

According to Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel, who responded to the scene, officers placed their hands on their weapons and ordered the man to drop the handgun, which he did.

At that time police learned the gun was an Airsoft-style replica Glock pistol with an orange tip on the barrel. However, said Weitzel, the way the man was carrying the gun, it wasn’t possible to tell whether the weapon was real or not.

Police learned that the man is attending summer classes at Riverside-Brookfield High School and was in class that day. They were unable to determine whether he had brought the gun with him to school.

“He didn’t think it was a big deal,” said Weitzel, who characterized the man’s decision to walk past the school holding what looked like a real handgun as “stupidity.”

Weitzel said police took the report seriously in light of multiple shooting incidents at schools around the country since the Sandy Hook massacre in December 2012. Another school shooting was reported June 10 in Oregon.

“In light of the recent shooting at a school in Oregon, it baffles me that someone would intentionally carry even a replica handgun in front of a school,” Weitzel said. 

Getaway foiled

A man and a woman, allegedly on a mission to steal bottles of liquor from suburban stores, were arrested after trying to make a speedy getaway from Tony’s Finer Foods, 7401 25th St. in North Riverside on June 11.

An assistant manager at the store said a 20-year-old Forest Park woman entered the store carrying a pink shoulder bag around 1:40 p.m. She reportedly took two bottles of cognac from the shelf, put them in her bag and left the store without paying. She reportedly entered the passenger door of a silver Dodge Caravan, which fled southbound on Harlem Avenue.

Shortly afterward, a Riverside police officer reported a silver van going 52 mph on Harlem Avenue. When the officer attempted to make a traffic stop, the driver of the van reportedly accelerated and initiated a pursuit through Berwyn. The two abandoned the van at Oak Park Avenue and 32nd Street, running away in different directions.

Both were apprehended nearby by police, who turned over the woman to North Riverside police. She was cited for retail theft.

The driver of the van, 43-year-old Duval Williams, of Chicago, was charged with felony fleeing and eluding police and ticketed for several traffic offenses. He remains in Cook County Jail on $2,000 bond.

Cops: Burglar passed out

An 18-year-old Riverside man, found passed out on his back in a Brookfield alley on June 15 about 9:30 a.m., was not charged with burglary even though police reported he was in possession of items stolen from at least two vehicles parked nearby.

According to police the two victims of the car break-ins declined to press felony charges against the man, who reportedly said he couldn’t remember what had happened the previous night.

When found by police in an alley behind the 9300 block of Burlington Avenue, the man allegedly possessed two bags of cannabis, a cup holder filled with loose change, a pair of earrings, three cellphone chargers, a pair of ear buds and cash totaling more than $500.

The cup holder full of change reportedly came from a vehicle parked in the 9400 block of Burlington and the earrings from a vehicle parked in the 3900 block of Madison Avenue.

The offender was charged with misdemeanor theft and possession of cannabis.

A resident of the 2300 block of Hainsworth Avenue, North Riverside, called police on June 11 to report that, during the overnight hours, someone had entered her unsecured 2004 Chevy Impala and removed a GPS unit.

Police also reported that a 2004 Nissan Murano parked in the same block had been burglarized. Missing from the vehicle was a CB radio, a garage door opener and a bank statement.

A third vehicle, a 2008 Chrysler Town and Country, parked in the 2400 block of Hainsworth, was also found burglarized on June 11. Taken from the unlocked vehicle were sunglasses, and about 100 children’s CDs and DVDs.

These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, June 10-15, 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