ComEd repair crews worked well into the evening on May 7 to install a new utility pole and rehang power lines before removing a white Kia Optima (in far background) whose driver crashed it through a fence at the Riverside Golf Club around 2 a.m. that day. The driver was critically injured in the crash. | Photo by Jill Wagner

A 43-year-old Cicero man was hospitalized in critical condition early on May 7 after he lost control of his 2018 Kia Optima while northbound on First Avenue at 26th Street and crashed into a ComEd utility pole, through a fence and into the Riverside Golf Club property.

Charges are pending against the man, whose blood-alcohol content was reportedly .22, or nearly three times the legal limit of .08, according to police.

No other vehicle appears to have been involved in the crash, which occurred around 2 a.m. When emergency personnel arrived at the scene, they observed the Kia inside the golf club property not too far from the 1st green. 

One power pole was down on the northwest corner of the intersection, with live wires on top of the vehicle. The impact of the crash also took down the power pole on the northwest corner. It reportedly fell into the street in the 2500 block of First Avenue.

Police blocked off the street for hours while ComEd worked to repair the damage and police processed the crash scene. Paramedics transported the driver to Loyola University Medical Center.

An open 12-pack of beer and a closed container of cognac were recovered from the Kia. Medical personnel drew blood samples from the driver to determine the presence of alcohol and/or drugs.

Police noted that the driver’s license had been revoked in 2018 for DUI. The vehicle remained on the golf course property until 6:30 p.m., when it was deemed safe to move the power lines, according to the police report.

Tom McHugh, general manager of Riverside Golf Club, said that while the outer fence, turf and some landscaping were damaged and the car came to rest less than 50 feet away from the putting green, it did not impact play.

“We were able to put a temporary fence around the scene to allow workers to repair any damaged utility lines. 

Mail thieves spotted

Riverside police responded to the U.S. Post Office, 45 E. Burlington St., on May 2 at 12:11 a.m. after someone called to report five men wearing dark clothing attempting to pry open mailboxes with crowbars.

As police arrived, a black sedan sped away westbound down Burlington and Forest avenues before turning south on First Avenue where the pursuing officer lost sight of the car. A McCook officer reported seeing the vehicle traveling at high speed on First Avenue before heading southbound on I-55.

Police reported that one of the four mailboxes outside the post office had been breached. The damaged mailbox contained one package. U.S Postal inspectors are investigating.

Stolen bike, trailer recovered

A 35-year-old Brookfield man suspected of stealing a bicycle and a trailer hooked to the back of it won’t face charges after the bike’s owner was able to recover his property a short time after it was stolen.

The bike’s owner, a 51-year-old Brookfield man, called police on May 4 at about 6:10 p.m. after someone stole his unsecured bike from outside Slager’s on 47th, 9308 47th St., and was last seen riding away eastbound.

The victim’s friends tried to locate the bike while the victim waited for police to arrive. A police officer reported seeing the suspected bike thief at about 6:35 p.m. riding a scooter in the 9100 block of Plainfield Road.

The suspect was positively identified as the thief, police reported, but the victim’s bike and trailer were located intact at about 6:40 p.m. behind an apartment building in the 4600 block of Maple Avenue. With his property returned, the victim told police he wouldn’t press charges.

The alleged thief was also given a warning against trespassing at Slager’s for the next year.

These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, May 2-8, 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