Riverside Golf Club General Manager Will Herman said last week that the club intends on installing security cameras in its parking lot and a license-plate reader camera at the Desplaines Avenue entrance after a spate of three vehicle thefts and a vehicle break-in within the past month.
The club also has now scheduled a valet, who will monitor the parking lot and look out for any suspicious activity, a move that turned out to be helpful to police in investigating the latest incident on June 10.
The valet called police at 3:05 p.m. after witnessing a burglary to a vehicle and an attempted break-in about an hour apart involving a gray Toyota Prius with California license plates.
Around 2 p.m., according to the employee, he saw a man get out of the Prius and enter the passenger side door of an unlocked vehicle. The man then exited the car and re-entered the Prius, which drove out of the club’s gates onto Desplaines Avenue.
According to the victim, a pair of sunglasses were missing from the center console of the vehicle.
About an hour later, the same Prius entered the parking lot again and pulled up to a vehicle whose windows were down about 3 inches. The same offender from the earlier incident got out of the Prius with a “jimmy” and approached the parked car.
However, the man apparently saw that he was being watched, causing him to get back into the Prius, which drove off.
With information about the make of the car and the California plates, police used a license-plate reader at the North Riverside Park Mall to track the car to the parking lot there.
Police located the Prius and observed a set of golf clubs on the back seat. The golf bag had a LaGrange Country Club tag on it. Police were later able to confirm that an employee of LaGrange Country Club had golf clubs stolen from his car earlier that day but had not reported the theft yet.
Herman said that a number of Chicago-area golf clubs have been experiencing thefts this year and in past years, although this is a new phenomenon at Riverside Golf Club.
“Every year this happens; it’s nothing new,” Herman said. “Once it happens once, they will try, try again until they’re stopped.”
Police reported that a license plate reader camera recorded the Prius leaving the mall property just before 6 p.m., prior to police getting confirmation of the golf club theft in LaGrange. The investigation continues and both the vehicle and suspects remain at large.
- North Riverside police responded to the 2300 block of 4th Avenue on June 12 at about 1 p.m. after a resident called to report what appeared to be a burglary in progress.
The victim told police he was inside the house sleeping when he heard the sound of glass break. Upon investigating, he reported seeing someone wearing a dark-colored hoodie in his kitchen.
That person fled the residence through the front door. Police observed a broken windowpane on a side door, where the offender gained entrance. Nothing was reported missing from the home.
- An employee at North Riverside Park Mall, 7501 Cermak Road, called police on June 15 at about 5 p.m. to report that someone had broken into his vehicle, which had been parked in the southwest lot near J.C. Penney since 10:45 a.m.
The rear passenger window was smashed out and the interior had been ransacked, but nothing was reported missing. Security cameras recorded video of the break-in, which involved a Chrysler 300 that had been reported stolen out of Chicago on June 13.
The Chrysler is seen circling the lot a few times before parking next to the victim’s vehicle. Someone exits the vehicle, smashed the window, gets in and then exits before driving away.
Riverside bike thefts
- Riverside police charged a 59-year-old Stickney man with theft after he allegedly stole a bicycle left outside the entrance door to Riverside Foods, 48 E. Burlington St. on June 7 at about 4:20 p.m.
The victim told police she had left the bike outside the store while she went shopping with some friends. When she exited the store just after 4:30 p.m., the bike was gone. Employees reportedly told the victim they saw a man riding off with it.
Police officers who reviewed security camera video reported recognizing the alleged offender, who arrived on another bicycle at the store at 4:18 p.m. The video reportedly shows the man standing in the vestibule of the store for about 30 seconds, before exiting, taking the victim’s bike and riding away westbound.
Officers arrested the alleged offender a short time later at the Riverside Farmers Market where he was waiting for a pizza he ordered. Police recovered the bike from under a stairwell at a nearby apartment complex.
- A resident of the 400 block of Repton Road called police on June 7 to report that his son’s bicycle was stolen between 2 and 3 p.m. from the front lawn of his home.
According to police, a doorbell camera in the neighborhood recorded video of a man walking up to the bike and taking it at about 2:30 p.m., heading northbound with it on Repton Road.
- A Riverside resident went to police on the morning of June 8 to report that his son’s bicycle had been stolen from the Riverside train station’s north platform on June 6 between 9:50 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Security cameras at the Metra station captured video of the theft, which occurred at 2:27 p.m. on June 6. A man is seen yanking on the bicycle, breaking the lock. He then walks the bike westbound onto Pine Avenue.
Police reported recovering the bike, which was found leaning against a fence a short distance from the platform.
Riverside police called off a high-speed chase during the early morning hours of June 6, determining that the offender’s reckless driving was too dangerous to continue the pursuit.
The officer reported observing a white vehicle traveling at 83 mph in a 30-mph zone while southbound on Harlem Avenue approaching Ogden Avenue at 4 a.m. The officer made a U-turn to catch up with the vehicle, but it switched into the right-turn lane at Ogden Avenue before making a U-turn and heading back northbound.
The officer again made a U-turn to follow, but the vehicle made another U-turn and began driving in a circle before speeding off southbound.
These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, June 6-15, 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