Cops: Woman stabbed attacker with box cutter

Cook County prosecutors have decided that a 21-year-old Summit woman who stabbed her boyfriend in the neck with a box cutter during an altercation inside a vehicle last week acted in self-defense and won’t face charges.

According to police, the woman was a passenger inside a vehicle that was southbound on Harlem Avenue on the afternoon of Nov. 20. During an altercation inside the vehicle in the 3500 block of Harlem Avenue, the driver, a 23-year-old Berwyn man described as the woman’s boyfriend, reportedly struck her in the mouth, causing her lip to start bleeding.

The altercation started over some text messages the woman had received, said police. The woman told the driver to pull over and let her out of the vehicle. When the driver refused and continued to verbally assault her, according to police, the woman pulled out a box cutter to keep him away from her until she could get out of the car.

During a struggle, the woman reportedly stabbed the driver in the neck. He drove to MacNeal Hospital in Berwyn and went into the emergency room, leaving the woman in the car. The woman drove away and was later found by Berwyn police in the parking lot of White Castle, at the corner of Ogden and Harlem avenues.

The driver was treated for minor stab wounds and released to police. During their investigation, police and the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office determined the woman was acting in self-defense.

The man was charged with one count of domestic battery.


North Riverside police are investigating two burglaries reported on Nov. 19 at homes that back up to each other in the 8900 blocks of 24th Street and Forestview Drive.

Details were not immediately available about the burglary of the Forestview Drive home.

The owner of the 24th Street home contacted police at about 10 a.m. to report that his garage had been burglarized.  Pry marks were observed on the service door to the garage and numerous items were missing, including power tools and hand tools, a hydraulic jack, an air compressor, a propane heater, a snow blower, a leaf blower and a portable battery jump start box.

The value of the items stolen from the garage was about $4,000.

Child struck in DUI incident

A 10-year-old girl suffered minor injuries after being hit by an allegedly drunk driver on Nov. 20 around 3 p.m. while crossing the street at the Longcommon/Nuttall/Herrick intersection in Riverside. She was walking home from Central Elementary School.

According to a Riverside police report, witnesses saw the driver, Julia Ann Rastelli, 50, of Riverside, hit the child and drive away from the scene.

Police Chief Tom Weitzel said in a statement that a crossing guard was in the crosswalk with the child with the stop sign down, but the driver ignored the pedestrian and the guard.

“The child was struck with such force that she rolled over the front of the SUV and landed on the concrete,” Weitzel said.

Police located Rastelli in her car in the 300 block of Eastgrove Road. When approached by officers, Rastelli reportedly denied hitting someone. The police reported that Rastelli failed sobriety tests.

In addition to being charged with felony DUI, Rastelli was also charged with disobeying a crossing guard while in a marked crosswalk, hit and run, driving while talking on a cellphone in a school zone, failure to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk, no vehicle insurance and endangering a child’s life.

Child allegedly beaten by brother

An 18-year-old Riverside resident was charged on Nov. 24 with felony aggravated domestic battery to a child for allegedly beating his 5-year-old brother, causing severe bruising over an undisclosed period of time.

The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services contacted Riverside police on Nov. 19 after they had been contacted by Riverside School District 96 officials, who noticed “severe” bruising on the 5 year old “not consistent with normal bruising [according] to staff members at District 96.”

Police noted “extensive” bruising on the child’s face, neck, legs and thighs. Some bruising appeared to be fresh while other bruises “appeared to be … healing for some period of time.”

The Landmark is not identifying the offender in this incident, because it would also identify the victim.


A 33-year-old Brookfield man contacted police on Nov. 17 at about 10 a.m. to report that two tires were taken from his father’s 1999 Freightliner semi-tractor truck parked in a lot in the 9100 block of Plainfield Road.

While investigating the theft, police also learned that a 2006 Volvo truck in the lot also had two tires missing. The tires were valued at $500 each.

 These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, Nov. 17-23, 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 and Ashley Lisenby