By Bob Uphues
North Riverside store robbed at gunpoint
Police in North Riverside and Berwyn believe the same man is responsible for a pair of armed robberies that occurred between 11:30 p.m. and midnight on Nov. 9.
At 11:55 p.m., a clerk at 7-Eleven, 9205 Cermak Road in North Riverside, reported he had just been held up at gunpoint. He told police he was stocking the doughnut rack when a man grabbed him from behind, pointed a gun at him and ordered him to open the two cash registers.
The suspect was described as a black male, about 6-foot-2, wearing a mask over his face, a black hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans, black Nike gym shoes and carrying a red shopping bag in his left hand.
After taking an undetermined amount of cash from both cash registers, the gunman exited the store and ran southbound down a nearby alley. A police search of the area did not turn up a suspect.
While investigating the robbery, North Riverside police learned that a suspect matching the description in the North Riverside incident had robbed the Mobil gas station at 6701 W. Cermak Road in Berwyn around 11:30 p.m. that night.
Two charged in gas station burglary
Two people have been charged with burglary after they allegedly used a baseball bat to break into a Riverside gas station minimart early on the morning of Nov. 6 and steal the cash register and cigarettes before fleeing the scene.
Peter G. Capote, 20, of Bensenville, and Appollonio F. Anaya, 17, of Berwyn, were apprehended by Lyons police later that morning at a gyros stand in the 3900 block of Harlem Avenue.
In addition, Stickney police also charged the two with burglary, while Berwyn charged Capote with burglary. All of the offenses were committed that morning and involved the offenders using a baseball bat to gain entry to commercial properties.
According to Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel, the village's emergency dispatch center received notice of a burglar alarm triggered at the Marathon gas station, 539 Longcommon Road.
When police arrived, they noticed the front glass door broken out and found a baseball bat on the floor of the minimart. Cigarette packs were strewn about the floor and the cash register was missing.
While officers were on the scene at the Riverside gas station, Stickney police broadcast a commercial burglary call in that village. A short time later, a Lyons police officer spotted a suspicious vehicle in the parking lot of Tom's Carry Outs in the 3800 block of Harlem Avenue in Lyons and held the two occupants of the vehicle for possible identification.
Surveillance video at the Riverside location showed that one of the offenders wore a red T-shirt and was wearing a pink glove. Both of those items were recovered from the suspects' vehicle along with cash and cigarettes, according to Weitzel.
Capote reportedly told police he and Anaya had taken Mollies, a form of the drug ecstasy, and didn't remember a lot about what transpired that night.
At a bond hearing on Nov. 8 at the Maybrook courthouse, Judge Thomas Tucker set Capote's bond at $50,000 and Anaya's bond at $10,000. They are both to appear in court again on Nov. 13.
Cannabis 'fort' shut down
Riverside police, acting on a tip from officials at Riverside-Brookfield High School, located and shut down a makeshift "fort" in the forest preserve area just east of the Forest Avenue-Parkview Road intersection near the high school.
At dismissal time on Nov. 8, police followed five students into the woods and shortly located the fort, which was constructed of fallen branches. Five juveniles were discovered inside the fort and as police approached, one of them ran away, carrying a black box which he reportedly threw into the woods.
Police later recovered the box, which they said contained cannabis. The 16-year-old boy who allegedly had the box in his possession was issued a citation for possession of cannabis. The other four juveniles, all boys between the ages of 15 and 16, were released without being charged.
Riverside police have asked the Cook County Forest Preserve District to destroy the structure.
Police chief Thomas Weitzel said police don't know how long students had been using the fort, but stated that the place was used to store cannabis, "in part because Riverside police routinely conduct unannounced canine narcotic searches on school property."
Brookfield police reported nearly a dozen break-ins to vehicles and garages between Nov. 4 and 10 in the north central area of the village, continuing a trend seen the previous week.
Items taken included bikes, tools, GPS units, cellphones, an in-dash radio, copper wire and a handicap placard.
These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Riverside, North Riverside and Brookfield police departments, Nov. 4-10, 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