By Bob Uphues
UPDATED: Wednesday, Oct. 28 at 3:52 p.m.
Riverside police say that the gray van involved in an attempted carjacking at the Amstar gas station, 3346 Harlem Ave., on Monday morning has been recovered and is being processed for evidence.
According to a press release issued by Riverside police on Wednesday afternoon, the van was stolen on Oct. 25 from the 8000 block of South Halsted Street in Chicago and recovered by Chicago police on Oct. 27 just a few blocks away in the 7600 block of South Sangamon Avenue.
The van has been turned over to the Illinois State Police Crime Lab, according to the press release.
Surveillance video obtained from the Amstar property, where the village of Riverside has a camera, showed that the offenders staked out the gas station before striking, circling several times while looking for a vulnerable victim. The attack took place at the pump closest to Harlem Avenue.
A 57-year-old Lyons woman fought off an armed carjacking suspect early Monday morning at the Amstar gas station, 3346 Harlem Ave., suffering minor injuries during the scuffle.
According to Riverside police, at about 6:05 a.m. on Oct. 26, the victim had just finished gassing up her vehicle at one of the pumps when a heavyset woman armed with a handgun approached and demanded she give up the car.
Instead of complying, the victim began fighting with her assailant, striking her a few times and injuring a finger in the process. The armed offender reportedly ran across the parking lot and got into a waiting gray van, which was last seen leaving the area southbound on Harlem Avenue.
The victim drove a couple of blocks before calling 911 to report the incident. She reportedly refused medical assistance for her injuries. The village of Riverside operates a surveillance camera at that location and detectives are investigating the incident.
Cops report suspicious incidents
Riverside police have charged a 65-year-old Summit man with disorderly conduct after he allegedly offered a child candy while sitting in his car and motioned for the child to approach the vehicle in the 300 block of Fairbank Road on Oct. 19 at about 8:20 a.m.
Weitzel said that at all times the child was in the company of an adult nanny, who picked up the child and walked away.
The incident was not reported to police until the morning of Oct. 20, according to Weitzel.
Detectives detained the man at his home on the afternoon of Oct. 21 after obtaining a license plate number of the vehicle from a security camera
Police charged the man with the misdemeanor offense after detectives interviewed him on the evening of Oct. 21. Weitzel said the man stated that he was "just trying to be nice" by offering the child candy, adding that the man acted strangely during the interview, at one point saying he used to work out with former professional baseball and football star Bo Jackson and flexing his muscles at detectives.
Riverside police also continue to investigate two incidents where a man, reportedly driving a dark-colored vehicle, confronted a female jogger near Big Ball Park on the morning of Oct. 21 and near Ames School on the morning of Oct. 24.
The woman told police that while she was jogging in the 200 block of Nuttall Road around 6:30 a.m. on Oct. 21, a man jumped out of his car and yelled something at her, possibly "come here." According to police, the man never made any physical contact with the woman.
On Oct. 24, the woman was jogging on Southcote Road near Ames School at about 7 a.m. when a dark vehicle drove past, then reversed to where she was standing. The driver, a white male with curly black hair and gauge earring in his left ear began to "dance" in his seat and then drove away.
It's unknown whether the same man confronted the jogger on both occasions. Police said there is no evidence linking the two incidents to the one involving the child.
Parolee hit with gun charges
The Cook County State's Attorney has charged 34-year-old North Riverside resident Cleveland Allgood with two felonies, unlawful use of a weapon and armed violence, after he was allegedly found in possession of a loaded handgun and drugs outside of 7-Eleven, 9205 Cermak Road, on Oct. 21 just after midnight.
A Lyft driver who had driven Allgood from Franklin Park to North Riverside, told police that Allgood had been acting suspiciously since she picked him up an hour earlier. The driver reportedly saw a North Riverside squad car in the parking lot of Sawa's Old Warsaw, 9200 Cermak Road and drove into the parking lot, stopping next to the squad car.
Allgood reportedly exited the car and headed into 7-Eleven while the Lyft driver went to the police officer, telling him to "stop that man" and indicating she feared for her life. During the drive, Allgood allegedly gave the driver directions and after 45 minutes, the driver told him she was running out of gas.
At that point, Allgood allegedly told the driver that "we are going to have a serious f-----g problem." Allgood apparently was not paying attention when the driver spotted the squad car and pulled into the parking lot for help.
Police detained Allgood as he left 7-Eleven and reported finding a loaded 9 mm handgun in his possession along with two bags containing cocaine, six bags containing cannabis and 46 individually packaged red and pink pills.
At the time of his arrest, Allgood was on parole for a 2018 conviction for aggravated battery to a police officer.
DUI suspects crash into fire hydrant, bus
North Riverside police forcibly removed a 60-year-old Berwyn man, reportedly under the influence of drugs, from his vehicle after he crashed it into a fire hydrant on the north side of 26th Street west of First Avenue on Oct. 20 at about 6:25 p.m.
Police initially received a 911 call reporting a reckless driver in a blue Mazda with no headlights on headed west on 26th Street. Police arrived to find the car crashed into the fire hydrant with a man in driver's seat still attempting to accelerate forward.
The driver reportedly grunted in response to police questions and continued to attempt to put the car back in gear and accelerate forward.
When paramedics arrived police were able to remove the driver and have him restrained on a gurney while he was transported to a hospital for treatment.
Police reported finding two bags of a white powdery substance, one of which tested positive for amphetamines, next to the driver's seat. The driver reportedly denied taking any drugs.
Riverside police charged a 19-year-old Berwyn man with driving under influence of cannabis after he allegedly crashed his 2008 Honda Civic into the back of a Pace bus that had come to a stop before crossing the Burlington Northern-Santa Fe Railroad tracks on Harlem Avenue at about 7:05 a.m. on Oct. 24.
Neither the bus driver nor the three passengers inside the bus were injured, said police, but the driver of the Honda appeared "incoherent" and failed field sobriety tests. Police reported recovering a bag of cannabis from the front seat of the Honda and the driver reportedly told police he had smoked cannabis prior to driving.
Paramedics took the man to MacNeal Hospital in Berwyn for treatment of minor injuries. In addition to DUI, the man was issued traffic citations.
North Riverside police charged a 26-year-old Chicago man with drunken driving after an officer stopped his red Chrysler, which was traveling at 60 mph in a 35 mph zone while eastbound in the 8800 block of Cermak Road on Oct. 24 at about 4:20 a.m.
According to police, the driver's license was suspended and also had an active warrant for his arrest out of Mississippi for fraud.
After reportedly failing field sobriety tests, a breath test revealed the driver's blood-alcohol content to be .145, which is nearly twice the legal limit of .08.
In addition to DUI, police issued traffic tickets for speeding and driving on a suspended license.
A 28-year-old Chicago man faces drunken driving charges after a Riverside police officer pulled him over for driving his 2015 blue Toyota at 60 mph in a 35 mph zone while northbound on First Avenue at Forest Avenue on Oct. 25 at about 8:25 p.m.
The driver reportedly admitted he had been drinking alcohol before driving and failed field sobriety tests.
A resident of the 400 block of Shenstone Road, Riverside, called police on the morning of Oct. 21 to report that her vehicle had been broken into overnight.
The contents of the vehicle were strewn around the inside and a charging cable appeared to be missing. However, police also noticed that the ignition switch appeared to have been tampered with.
Basketball hoop heisted
Brookfield police responded to a residence in the 4100 block of Eberly Avenue on Oct. 22 after someone called to report that someone stole a basketball stand, backboard and rim from the alley behind the residence sometime between 6 and 9 p.m.
The stand wasn't secured to anything, but the base was filled with water to prevent it from tipping over. Police said it did not appear that anyone dragged it away and may have been mistaken as trash by a scrapper.
These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, Oct. 19-26, 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