Oak Park police arrested four people in three separate incidents last week at a location long known for being a favorite spot to do heroin, purchased on the West Side of Chicago.

“There’s nothing out of the ordinary here,” said police spokesman Sgt. LaDon Reynolds. “We’ve been aware of this area for a long time. It’s just the police doing their job.”

Travis J. Hepner, 20, of Oswego, was the driver of a car allegedly parked illegally in a handicapped space at a gas station at Harrison St. and Austin Blvd., the afternoon of July 2. Police say they found five packets of heroin on Hepner. When Charles F. Blackburn, 24, of Montgomery, walked out of a nearby restroom, police say, he dropped a small wad of paper that contained three packets of heroin. Hepner, who allegedly also had a quantity of marijuana on him, was charged with two counts of endangering the life of the two juveniles in the rear seat.

Police, attracted to a car sporting an expired license plate near that same gas station the night of June 30, found Tiffany J. Shawtell, 26, of New Lenox inside. A search allegedly turned up two small baggies containing heroin.

A 19-year-old Chicago woman was reportedly observed by police loitering near a known drug spot at Harrison and Austin around 11:30 a.m., July 4. When she was stopped by police on the 900 block of South Humphrey Ave., she was found to be wanted on an arrest warrant for failing to appear on a retail theft charge in McHenry County. The woman was later charged with criminal damage to state-supported property after she allegedly damaged the wall of a holding cell inside the police station.



A television and laptop computer, valued in total at $2,500, were stolen from a home on the 400 block of North Marion St. by unknown means between June 30 and July 2.

A cellphone, digital camera and a wallet containing $60 were stolen from an unlocked car parked in a lot on the 400 block of Lake St., the afternoon of July 4.



A boy estimated to be 14-16 years old accosted a woman on the 400 block of North Austin Blvd., the morning of July 3, and implied he had a weapon. After he repeatedly demanded money, the woman gave him her cellphone and car and house keys.



A 2007 Ford Explorer, valued at $26,000, was stolen from the 1100 block of South Taylor Ave., overnight July 5.

John J. McDonald, 53, of Forest Park, and Michael R. Callahan, 29, of Lyons, were allegedly observed by CTA personnel, the afternoon of July 2, taking a 3-foot-square section of metal off the CTA Blue Line platform, 720 S. Austin Blvd. They then bent the panel and placed it in a black plastic bag.

Oscar L. Ware, 40, of Chicago, was stopped on the first block of North Ridgeland Ave., the afternoon of June 30, after he matched the description of a theft suspect. He was allegedly found in possession of a stolen catalytic converter.

Sometime between June 27 and July 1, a catalytic converter was stolen from a vehicle on the 300 block of Clinton Ave.

Someone stole 12 feet of copper gutter off a home on the 700 block of South Humphrey Ave., overnight June 30.

Derrick Armstrong, 41, of Berwyn was charged with felony retail theft after he allegedly stole $70 in merchandise from the CVS Pharmacy at Roosevelt Rd. and Ridgeland Ave., the afternoon of July 5.

Michael West, 32, allegedly stole three bottles of supplements from Whole Foods Market, 7225 Lake St., the night of July 3.

Haywood Johnson, 37, of Maywood, was charged with felony retail theft after allegedly stealing fruit and candy from Whole Foods, the morning of July 5.

Cars were burglarized on the first block of Erie Ct., overnight July 2; the 300 block of South Maple Ave., overnight June 29; and the 300 block of North East Ave. between June 26 and July 2.

An unlocked bike was stolen from Keystone Park, 7900 Lake St., June 27; a locked bike from a stairwell on the 200 block of North Oak Park Ave., June 30; and another from an unlocked garage, July 1-3.



Frank L. Ward. 27, was reportedly found slumped over the steering wheel of a car on the 500 block of Lake St. around 4 a.m., July 3. After “numerous attempts,” police finally roused Ward, who allegedly failed a field sobriety test.

Michael D. Trippin, 29, of Brookfield, was found unconscious after colliding with a parkway tree on the 100 block of Ontario St., the morning of June 30. Police say they found a small baggie containing heroin in Trippin’s possession. He was charged with driving under the influence of drugs and with drug possession.

Romero Carmona, 27, was pulled over around 3:30 a.m., July 6, on the 7200 block of North Ave. for an alleged illegal turn and improper lane usage. Police charged Carmona, who they say was driving on a suspended license and had no proof of insurance, with aggravated DUI.

Sean Chantarapont was reportedly found unconscious and slumped behind the wheel of a car at Lathrop Ave. and Iowa St. shortly before 2 a.m., July 1.

Brian J. O’Hara, 52, was allegedly found to be driving under the influence after being stopped for an traffic violation on the 7500 block of LeMoyne St. around 2:30 a.m., July 2.


An Oak Park woman who was charged with battery and mob action, June 26, after allegedly punching and kicking an Oak Park girl, was herself the victim of battery, June 27. An Oak Park girl turned herself in to police, July 3, after being accused of spraying the woman in the face with an unknown substance and punching her, then dragging her out of her car and continuing to punch her.



Dean K. Miranda, 36, of Chicago was pulled over on the 7900 block of Chicago Ave. for suspended plates and registration around 12:30 a.m., July 7. After police determined Miranda was driving on a suspended license and could provide no proof of insurance, they arrested him and searched the car. They allegedly found 12 plastic baggies containing marijuana, and charged him with possession with intent to deliver.


Outside warrant

Tharthur Johnson, 40, of Durham, N.C., was stopped as a suspicious person, the evening of July 5, near Lake St. and William Ave. A name check turned up arrest warrants out of Westmont, Cook County and Du Page County.


Death investigation

A 21-year-old Oak Park man was found unresponsive on the floor of a residence on the 1100 block of Superior St. around 6 a.m., June 30. Repeated attempts to resuscitate him were unsuccessful.


These items were obtained from police reports filed by the Oak Park and River Forest police departments from June 29 to July 7. Not all incidents that occurred are listed. Anyone named in reports has only been charged with a crime and cases have not yet been adjudicated.

-Compiled by Bill Dwyer

Calling all cars

Fun and games with BB guns

Shortly after midnight, July 6, a Bellwood man, standing on the 900 block of North Elmwood Ave., was shot by a pellet gun from a passing car. The man, who said his assailant fired six shots at him, was treated and released from West Suburban Hospital for an entry wound in his left calf. Earlier that evening on the 700 block of Madison, BBs were used to shatter a business’ 3-by-5-foot window.

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