Burglars hit three businesses in the 700 block of Lake Street on April 8 – Papaspiros, 728 Lake; Geppetto’s Toy Box, 730 Lake; and Courageous Bakery, 736 Lake. 

The burglary at Geppetto’s took place 3:54 a.m. The burglary at Papaspiros was sometime between 1 and 7 a.m. and the Courageous Bakery burglary took place between 4:15 and 5 a.m. 

The offender pried open a rear door at Geppetto’s and then stole a cash register and cash, according to police, who did not report how the other two businesses were accessed. 

An iPad mini, iPad and several loaves of bread were stolen from Papaspiros, and the offender reportedly also drank a beer and ate two bags of potato chips. The estimated loss to Papaspiros was $320, according to police.

Police gave a brief description of the offender at Courageous Bakery as a white male with red hair. He reportedly stole a blue bank deposit bag from the top of the safe. The offender also tried to open the safe and cash register. It’s unclear whether he was successful. The estimated loss at the bakery was reported at about $200.  

Oak Park discount store robbed

Oak Park Discount Variety, 416 N. Austin Blvd., was robbed at 3:55 p.m. on April 8, by two men in their late teens or early 20s. 

According to police, the two offenders entered the establishment and told an employee to get on the ground. One of the men then attempted to open the cash register but was unable, so he ordered the clerk to open it. 

The clerk complied, and the two stole cash from the register before fleeing. The estimated loss $350. 

The offenders were described by police as black and about 5-foot-6 tall, with a thin builds. One wore a black jacket with a dark hooded sweatshirt, dark pants and white shoes, while the other wore a long-sleeve dark shirt, dark sweatpants with white drawstrings, dark shoes and a gray mask that concealed the bottom half of his face. 

Woman flashes gun outside restaurant

A verbal altercation at Denny’s restaurant, 711 N. Harlem Ave., on April 8 at about 8:20 a.m. escalated to the point where a female patron threatened two people with gun in the parking lot, according to Oak Park police. 

The victim asked the alleged offender and her two companions — a man and a woman — to leave the restaurant during the incident. The woman reportedly threatened to beat up the victim and the altercation continued outside, where the woman displayed a black handgun in her purse. 

The offender and her two companions and then entered a Buick Rendezvous and drove off southbound on Harlem.

Oak Park police report home invasion

An Oak Park woman was the victim of a burglary and home invasion in the 1100 block of South Lombard Avenue at 4:45 p.m. on April 4, according to Oak Park police.

The victim returned to her home, parked her vehicle in the garage and entered her residence through the back door when she was confronted by the offender.

The incident was classified as a home invasion due to the offender grabbing the victim from behind and demanding money. He then reportedly took cash and jewelry and ransacked several rooms in the home, police said in a press release. The offender then fled the scene.

The incident prompted a search of the neighborhood by Oak Park police, who notified residents via social media shortly after the home invasion took place.

The offender was described as black, in his 20s and with a medium complexion. He wore a black knit cap, a black jacket, black pants and gray gloves.


A garage was burglarized in the 700 block of South Euclid Avenue sometime between 2:30 p.m. on April 4 and 7:07 a.m. on April 6. The offender entered by unknown means and stole two bicycles. The offender also entered a vehicle parked in the garage and ransacked the interior, stealing cash. The estimated loss is $1,051.


A dark-blue 2014 Ford Explorer that was reported stolen out of Oak Park on March 28, 2018 was recovered by the Chicago Police Department in the 5400 block of West Jackson in Chicago at 8:45 a.m. on April 6.

A man wearing brown coveralls and hood stole a large umbrella frame from the rear of Pete’s Fresh Market, 259 Lake St., at approximately 3:15 p.m. on April 5. The thief pulled up in a large, white U-Haul truck and loaded the frame with a wooden pallet into the truck and drove off. The estimated loss is $3,000 to $4,000.

A black and blue Comanche mountain bicycle was stolen from a bicycle rack in the 900 block of South Oak Park Avenue sometime between 9 and 10 p.m. on March 17. The estimated loss is $200.

A tan 2016 Jeep Wrangler parked on the street was stolen from the 800 block of South Humphrey Avenue sometime between 11 p.m. on April 6 and 9:45 a.m. on April 7. The vehicle was recovered by Oak Park police the same day. No apprehensions were made. The estimated loss is $25,000.

Criminal damage

Someone used a pry tool to damage the driver’s side window to a vehicle in the 900 block of West Washington Boulevard sometime between 2 and 4 p.m. on March 3. The estimated damage is $380.

Someone used a sharp object to scratch a 12-inch mark on the passenger-side door of a vehicle in the 1100 block of Ontario Street sometime between 9:15 a.m. and 7:15 p.m. on April 6. The estimated damage is $500.

These items, obtained from the Oak Park and River Forest police departments, came from reports, April 3-8, and represent a portion of the incidents to which police responded. Anyone named in these reports has only been charged with a crime and cases have not yet been adjudicated. We report the race of a suspect only when a serious crime has been committed, the suspect is still at large, and police have provided us with a detailed physical description of the suspect as they seek the public’s help in making an arrest.

Compiled by Timothy Inklebarger

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