Park Forest, IL-(ENEWSPF)- It’s not our favorite thing to read about on Mother’s Day; nor is this our favorite story to report on Mother’s Day. A Park Forest man was arrested on April 30 and charged with one felony count of aggravated driving while license was revoked and one felony count of using a false name on an application of registration. Police said the man purchased a vehicle and “illegally registered the vehicle in his deceased mother’s name,” according to the police report.
An officer was in a squad car facing north on Shabbona Drive just south of Sangamon Street at 7:15 p.m. when he observed a blue BMW sedan traveling east on Sangamon Street toward Shabbona Drive. The officer checked the license of the vehicle and had prior knowledge that the vehicle was “routinely operated by Gary M. Manthei,” and that Mr. Manthei’s driving privileges were revoked for driving under the influence, according to police.
So the officer followed the BMW and obtained images of Mr. Manthei from a law enforcement database. The vehicle stopped at the stop sign located at the intersection of Sangamon Street and Shabbona Drive. According to the report, the officer was able to “clearly observe the driver of the vehicle and identify him as Manthei” since he had an unobstructed view of the driver and there was still daylight. The vehicle turned north on Shabbona Drive, then northwest on Blackhawk Drive. The officer positioned his squad behind the vehicle and utilized his mobile data terminal to confirm the vehicle was registered in the name of the man’s deceased mother and to verify that Mr. Manthei’s driving privileges were currently revoked.
Gary M. Manthei, 51, 324 Sangamon St., Park Forest, was arrested on April 30 and charged with one felony count of aggravated driving while license was revoked and one felony count of using a false name on an application of registration. Mr. Manthei was also charged with operating an uninsured motor vehicle.
Once confirmed, the officer initiated an investigatory traffic stop on Blackhawk Drive near Miami Street, according to the report.
The officer spoke with the driver and requested a driver’s license. The driver related that he did not have a license and provided and Illinois identification card which confirmed that he was Gary M. Manthei, according to police. Mr. Manthei allegedly told the officer that he was only driving to get a gallon of milk and “absolutely” knew that he should not be driving, according to police.
Mr. Manthei was unable to provide valid proof of insurance, according to police.
Mr. Manthei allegedly told the officer that his mother, who is deceased, registered the vehicle approximately a year or two ago. Mr. Manthei then related that he purchased the vehicle from a friend approximately a year-and-a-half ago, according to police. Finally, Mr. Manthei allegedly admitted that he registered the vehicle in his deceased mother’s name after purchasing it because he did not have a valid driver’s license, according to police.
Mr. Manthei was advised that he was under arrest. The vehicle was towed from the scene and impounded per local ordinance.
An arrest does not mean that a person is guilty. All those arrested are presumed innocent until proven guilty. It is the policy of eNews Park Forest to not remove items in the public record from publication. If your name is listed in the police reports, we will only add information relevant to the final disposition of the case at hand, e.g. “Mr. Smith was subsequently acquitted,” “Mr. Smith entered a guilty plea,” or “All charges against Mr. Smith were subsequently dropped.” We will do so upon receiving and verifying proof of such disposition.
Persons wishing to leave anonymous information on any criminal matters including narcotics or gang activity are encouraged to call the Park Forest Police Department Investigations Division at (708) 748-1309.