Riverside police charged a 25-year-old Lyons woman with drunken driving and cited her for several traffic offenses after she reportedly crashed her 2003 Cadillac into a cellphone utility building in the 3400 block of First Avenue, next to the cellphone tower at Riverside-Brookfield High School, on Dec. 30 at about 2:40 a.m.

According to police, the investigation showed that the driver was traveling southbound on First Avenue at a high rate of speed when she lost control of the Cadillac, which jumped the curb and slammed into the metal fence outside the Verizon utility building. The car spun around and landed in a grassy area next to the structure.

Police said the driver was visibly injured, “reeked” of alcohol and could barely stand when an officer attempted to aid her. Paramedics transported the driver to Loyola University Medical Center for treatment of what were described as non-life threatening injuries. She was released back into police custody at 10:25 a.m. that same morning.

A 29-year-old Chicago woman who was a passenger in the vehicle was not injured, police said. The heavily damaged Cadillac, from which police reported recovering numerous open beer cans, was towed from the scene.

In addition to driving under the influence of alcohol, the driver was cited for improper operation of a motor vehicle, driving on a sidewalk and transportation of open alcohol.

Crashes abound in Riverside

Riverside police reported four other vehicle crashes last week, two of them involving drivers impaired by alcohol and/or drugs.

A 49-year-old man and 51-year-old woman, both of Chicago, were taken to Loyola University Medical Center for treatment of apparently minor injuries after their 2016 Dodge Journey was struck from behind by a semi-tractor trailer while south bound on First Avenue near Waubansee Road on Jan. 2 at about 12:40 p.m.

The driver of the Dodge told police that traffic slowed down near the train trestle over First Avenue and the truck struck his vehicle, pushing it off the roadway. The semi driver, a 25-year-old Chicago man was cited for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

Riverside police charged a 24-year-old Brookfield man with DUI when he allegedly slammed into the rear of a vehicle stopped at a red light on northbound First Avenue at 31st Street at 11 p.m. on Jan. 2.

Tyler Plunkett reportedly was at the wheel of a 2006 Chrysler 300M, which police said showed no signs of braking prior to striking a 2012 Chevy Equinox from behind. Plunkett suffered a head injury and was taken to MacNeal Hospital in Berwyn for treatment. A pair of 16 year olds in the Chevy were not seriously hurt.

Police reported that Plunkett has two prior DUI arrests from 2015 and 2018, both involving use of drugs. In this case, Plunkett reportedly told police he’d ingested Xanax and cannabis before driving. Police say they will seek a felony indictment against Plunkett.

A 94-year-old Lyons man was not seriously hurt when he lost control of his 2010 Ford Escape and struck a tree while trying to make a right turn from eastbound 31st Street onto Woodside Road on Jan. 5 at about 1:45 p.m.

Markham resident Everett D. Smith, 58, was charged with felony driving under the influence, possession of a controlled substance, battery, resisting arrest, driving on a suspended license and leaving the scene of an accident after he reportedly rear-ended a vehicle stopped at a red light on northbound First Avenue at Forest Avenue on Jan. 6 at about 9 p.m.

Smith reportedly fled the scene, with his 2008 Ford’s front bumper dragging beneath the vehicle. Police located the vehicle near the intersection of Forest and East avenues in downtown Riverside.

Police reported recovering a small plastic bag containing heroin from Smith’s pants pocket. Smith also was allegedly combative with police, kicking an officer while in custody. 

Vehicle break-in

A 51-year-old Homewood man contacted Brookfield police on Jan. 4 to report that someone had stolen a backpack from his unlocked vehicle, which was parked on the street in the 3100 block of Cleveland Avenue between 6 and 8:30 p.m.

The backpack reportedly contained business papers and cards, a pair of prescription eyeglasses and a MacBook computer valued at $1,200. Nothing else was reported missing from the vehicle.

Up in smoke

Brookfield firefighters responded to a home in the 3600 block of Grand Boulevard on Dec. 31 at about 6:35 a.m. after someone called to report Christmas tree decorations on fire in front of her home.

Firefighters put out the small fire and the homeowner reportedly told police that she’d been smoking a cigarette about an hour earlier and had thrown the still-smoldering butt in the planter box, which most likely ignited the tree.

No other property was damaged.

— Compiled by Bob Uphues

These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, Dec. 30, 2018 and Jan. 6, 2019, 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.