North Riverside police arrested two men suspected of stealing catalytic converters after a public works employee reportedly saw one of them crawl out from underneath a vehicle parked in the 2400 block of Hainsworth Avenue on June 27 at about 12:30 p.m.
The employee told police he saw a black Chevy Malibu facing southbound on Hainsworth just north of Traube Street in the center of the road next to another vehicle. Next, he saw a man in all black clothing wearing a black mask emerge from under the other vehicle and get into the Malibu, which drove south toward 26th Street.
While police later learned that the catalytic converter remained intact on the other vehicle, they also learned that the Indiana license plates on the Malibu previously had been on an Infiniti wanted in connection with a catalytic converter theft at the North Riverside Park Mall, 7501 Cermak Road, on May 16.
License-plate reader cameras informed police that the Malibu had entered and exited the mall property after leaving Hainsworth and Traube, and a Riverside police officer located the vehicle at Harlem Avenue and 25th Street.
With the Malibu stopped in northbound traffic on Harlem Avenue, three police squad cars boxed it in. The driver of the Malibu, later identified as Mychael Williamson, 27, of Chicago, allegedly struck two police vehicles and another vehicle in traffic while trying to maneuver the Malibu out of the police box-in.
One police officer exited his squad and ordered the two occupants out at gunpoint. The passenger, later identified as Marcellius Tarver, 27, of Chicago, reportedly ran from the car but was apprehended about 15 yards away.
Williamson reportedly exited and ran north and wound up locking himself in the men’s bathroom at Chipotle near the corner of Harlem and Cermak in Berwyn. Police forced the door open and took Williamson, who was wearing an ankle monitor after being placed on probation on June 1, into custody. The monitor reportedly placed him at Hainsworth and Traube at the time the village employee called police.
Police reported finding a reciprocating saw and used saw blades inside the Malibu and a sawn-off catalytic converter in the trunk. Police also reported that the Malibu was registered to a corporation in Iowa.
The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office charged Williamson with aggravated fleeing/eluding police, while Tarver was charged with a felony count of possession of burglary tools. Both were also charged with resisting arrest.
- Brookfield police on June 28 charged a 38-year-old Brookfield man with 33 counts of possession of catalytic converters after police recovered 33 of the devices from the home of a relative following an investigation into a spree of recent catalytic converter thefts in the village.
Police developed the man as a suspect after they obtained security video from one of the recent thefts, but they apparently could not directly tie him to any of those incidents. However, police reportedly obtained consent to search the relative’s residence and found catalytic converters of all kinds in the garage and basement.
During an interview with police the man reportedly admitted he buys catalytic converters from third parties looking to get rid of them quickly and that he extracts the very valuable rhodium, melts it down and sells it for large sums of money.
Brookfield police sought felony charges against the man, but the Cook County State’s Attorney denied the request.
SUV pins woman against pole
A Brookfield woman accidentally wound up pinned between her SUV and a utility pole in the alley after she reportedly got out of the vehicle to close her garage door on the afternoon of June 27.
Emergency personnel responding to the scene arrived to find the woman freed from the vehicle and pole. The person who called 911 was on scene and told police he was driving by when he observed the woman trapped. He was able to enter the SUV and turn it off at which time the woman was able to wriggle free.
The woman, who was taken to Loyola University Medical Center for treatment of unspecified injuries, told police that as she was leaving her garage, the overhead door malfunctioned.
She believed she had put the vehicle in park and exited it to attend to the door. At the time the SUV, which was in gear, began moving forward toward the utility pole. As the woman attempted to get back into the vehicle, she inadvertently got trapped between it and the pole and was pinned there for about two minutes before the passerby arrived to help.
Lock those doors
Brookfield police reported that someone opened the doors to about 10 unlocked vehicles overnight on June 26-27 on the village’s north end, but apparently left the interiors of those vehicles undisturbed.
Police responding to the area found at least nine vehicles with doors wide open in the 3100 and 3200 block of Prairie Avenue, the 8900 block of Monroe Avenue and the 9100 block of Monroe Avenue.
In each case, the vehicles’ owners told police the interiors appeared the same as they’d left them. Security camera video reportedly showed someone who was wearing a light-colored shirt opening vehicle doors while walking northbound on Prairie Avenue.
A woman called Riverside police on June 25 to report that three bicycles were taken from the detached garage of a property in the 2900 block of Harlem Avenue sometime after June 20.
According to police there were no signs of forced entry to the garage. The bikes were described as a women’s gray Trek mountain bike with lock-in pedals valued at $750, and two men’s gray Schwinn mountain bikes valued at $300 and $100.
Riverside police charged a 20-year-old Chicago woman with driving under the influence after a police officer reported observing her driving erratically and at a high rate of speed while northbound on Harlem Avenue on June 26 just before 1 a.m.
The office reported that the driver showed signs of intoxication and observed the smell of burnt cannabis. After failing field sobriety tests, the driver was arrested. Police also reported recovering a plastic bag containing a small amount of cannabis and a stem of mushrooms.
These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, June 25-29, 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