A former Riverside man remains in custody at Cook County Jail after he was arrested for allegedly threatening to harm family members and burn down their home for failing to give him money.

Ted Coffman, 55, reportedly showed up at his mother’s house on Jan. 12 and demanded money from her. When she refused, according to police, Coffman told his 85-year-old mother and another relative that he would “slice their throats and set the house on fire.”

Coffman fled the scene before police arrived, but Riverside police alerted other agencies that they wanted him detained. On Feb. 10 at 1:40 a.m., Cicero police arrested Coffman after responding to a call of a suspicious person.

Police charged Coffman, who has not lived in Riverside for at least two years, with two counts each of assault and disorderly conduct. He has been arrested more than 55 times in the past, according to police, and he is being held on $25,000 bond.

Infant left in unlocked car

North Riverside police charged a 27-year-old Maywood woman with endangering the life of a child after she allegedly left her 1-year-old son asleep in a car seat inside her unlocked vehicle, which was parked in the lot at Tony’s Finer Foods, 7401 25th St. on Jan. 31 at 9:15 a.m.

A store employee called police after checking on the infant’s well-being. At 9:21 a.m. a woman pushing a shopping cart containing several bags of groceries approached the vehicle and confirmed the vehicle was hers.

Surveillance video indicated that the baby had been left in the unlocked, unattended vehicle for a full half hour. Police also contacted the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.

Dogs on the loose

Riverside police cited a 29-year-old Berwyn man for letting his dogs run at large after officers spent the better part of an hour trying to corral and then return a pair of pit bulls found wandering in and out of traffic on Harlem Avenue between Longcommon Road and East Burlington Street on the morning of Feb. 9.

An officer responded to the scene at about 9:50 a.m. and reported observing two brown pit bulls without collars running in the middle of the 3200 block of Harlem Avenue. 

The dogs eventually made their way into the 400 block of Addison Road and wandered into an open garage, where the officer corralled them by hitting a garage door opener mounted on the outside of the structure.

According to police, while the dogs didn’t attack anyone, they would at times display aggressive behavior, such as growling at police and other pedestrians. Several other police officers arrived to the home on Addison Road, and police were able to secure the dogs in the back of a squad car while attempting to locate their owner.

The dogs live at a home in the 3300 block of Clinton Avenue, said police.

“These two pit bulls caused police to be tied up for over 55 minutes,” said Police Chief Thomas Weitzel. “[They] also caused major traffic problems on Harlem Avenue.”

Dude, where’s my car?

Police responded to Phil’s Sports Bar and Grill, 8901 Burlington Ave., Brookfield, on Feb. 7 at about 10:20 p.m. after a 65-year-old man called to report that someone had stolen his SUV.

According to police, the man said he’d parked his car on Prairie Avenue next to the bar, but that it was now missing. The man also said he’d also stopped in for drinks at two other establishments on Grand Boulevard, but that he was “positive” he parked his car next to Phil’s.

Police located the man’s car parked in the 3700 block of Grand Boulevard, next to another bar. The man told police a family member would be coming to pick him up.


Brookfield police responded to a home in the 4100 block of Prairie Avenue on the morning of Feb. 12 after a resident called to report that someone had broken into the residence.

According to police, someone broke a glass storm door to open the main door, which had a key in the door handle. The offender apparently went into the basement and overturned a garbage can, scattering garbage on the floor.

A woman who was inside the home at the time, but did not call police, reportedly heard a loud crash and locked the door of her bedroom. She told police she heard a male voice call out the name of a former roommate several times.

Nothing was reported missing from the home.

These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, Jan. 31-Feb. 12, 2018 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