Law and Order, Local Police Reports, Park Forest

Park Forest Police Blotter Reports Through July 23, 2019

TimStrong police squad
The #TimStrong police squad parked in the DownTown on July 4, 2019. (Photo: Gary Kopycinski)

Park Forest, IL-(ENEWSPF)- These police reports include arrests through July 23, 2019. Charges for those arrested include domestic battery, obstructing identification, and reckless conduct. The reckless conduct charge invited someone allegedly shooting a gun into the air.

Providing more details than readers will find in any other police beat reports, we invite readers to subscribe to get the whole story, every day.

eNews Park Forest has always published addresses of those arrested and will continue to do so. 5 ILCS 140/2.15 states that the governmental body (for these reports, the Police Department), shall release information on those who have been charged, including their name, age, and address. This information is necessary to ensure the proper identity of those arrested.

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.

eNews Park Forest reports this information because the public in the United States has the right to know.  When that information is withheld or under-reported, it leaves questions.  We also want to show the work that the police force does every day that is not reported.  Police in Park Forest respond to thousands of calls per year, the vast majority of which do not end up with arrests.  Whether it’s conducting a routine investigation, pulling over a drunk driver, or responding to a possible theft at a store, the work of the police officer deserves acknowledgment by the public.

Domestic Battery

Deanna L. Watkins, 32, 3426 Western Ave., Park Forest, was arrested on July 17 and charged with domestic battery and obstructing identification after police were dispatched to the 3400 block of Western Avenue to investigate a report of a domestic dispute.

Ms. Watkins allegedly struck a man in the face with her open hand causing a laceration on his eyebrow, according to police. The alleged victim was transported to St. James Hospital in Olympia Fields by an ambulance of the Park Forest Fire Department, according to the report.

Domestic Battery

Jaquon T. Scott, 20, 5327 Crosswind Dr., Richton Park, was arrested on July 19 and charged with domestic battery after police responded at 12:53 AM to a home in the 300 block of Dogwood Street to investigate a report of a domestic disturbance.

Mr. Scott allegedly hit a woman in the mouth, eyes, and her left side, according to police. A responding officer observed a blackened right eye and scratches to the woman’s right hand, according to police.

Mr. Scott was taken to the Park Forest Police Department where he was processed and charged with domestic battery and held pending transportation to the Markham Courthouse for a bond hearing, according to police.

Fierce Dog, No Animal License/Tags: No Arrest

Margaret R. Burks, 33, 53 S. Arbor Trail, Park Forest, was issued a municipal citation on July 19 charging fierce dog and no animal license/tags after police responded at 3:55 PM to the first block of South Arbor Trail to investigate a report of an animal bite. Jacqueline Franklin, 58, 53 S. Arbor Trail, Park Forest, was also issued a municipal citation charging animal running at large.

Approximately 10 minutes prior to officers arriving, a man was in the grassy yard immediately south of his residence in the first block of South Arbor Trail with his white 13-year-old Shih Tzu/Poodle. His dog was not leashed but was directly next to him, according to the report. Suddenly, a large dog approached. The man attempted unsuccessfully to “shoo” the large dog away.

The dog bit his Shih Tzu/Poodle three times on the neck before it was retrieved by its owner, according to police. During one of the bites, the dog shook the smaller dog like a chew toy, according to police.

The owner of the smaller dog related that he would like the other dog’s owner cited and then left to take his Shih Tzu/Poodle to VCA Forest South Animal Hospital for treatment.

Police spoke with Jacqueline Franklin who said that she lives with her daughter, Margaret Burks. Her daughter owns a brindle -colored five-year-old Pit Bull/Bull Mastiff. On today’s date at around 3:45 PM she let the large dog outside to urinate. At the time, she said she did not see anyone outside.

She then witnessed her daughter’s dog bite the smaller dog on the neck, shake it, and then throw it, according to the report.

She said she did not believe that her daughter’s dog was being vicious but instead thinks the larger dog was attempting to play, according to police.

Driving on a Suspended License

Kiara J. Lewis, 21, 6 Sauk Trail, Park Forest, was arrested on July 19 and charged with driving on a suspended driver’s license and obstructed windshield when an officer traveling eastbound on Sauk Trail near Orchard Drive saw a silver Pontiac G6 also traveling eastbound allegedly with a windshield obstruction, hanging items from the rearview mirror, according to police.

The officer checked the listed vehicle’s registration through a law enforcement database and learned that the registered owner, Kiara T. Lewis, had a suspended driver’s license.

Ms. Lewis also had an outstanding warrant out of Indiana which was later determined to be “non-serviceable” in Illinois, according to police.

When the officer pulled Ms. Lewis over, he noticed that the driver’s license she provided had a different number from the suspended license number, according to police. Both driver’s licenses for Ms. Lewis had the same descriptors including Ms. Lewis’ date of birth, physical description, and address, according to police. Due to the discrepancy with Ms. Lewis his identity and her driver’s license possibly being suspended, Ms. Lewis was taken into custody and transported to the Park Forest Police Department for fingerprint identification. Her vehicle was towed per local ordinance.

Ms. Lewis did not initially provide any explanation as to the apparent discrepancy with names and advised she believed someone was using her identity. She said she did not know who Kiara J. Lewis was, asserting that she was Kiara T. Lewis, according to police.

The arresting officer checked an arrest database and observed Ms. Lewis’ photograph and multiple arrests on traffic offenses including driving with a suspended driver’s license, according to police. The officer checked a Cook County Circuit Court case inquiry form and observed that Ms. Lewis had been arrested on a charge of driving with a suspended driver’s license under both names Kiara J. Lewis and Kiara T. Lewis.

The officer eventually received the fingerprint inquiry for Ms. Lewis and observed that Ms. Lewis’s fingerprints came back to both names, according to police.

According to police, it appeared Ms. Lewis had been using both listed name variations and had been issued a valid driver’s license from the Illinois Secretary of State under the name of Kiara T. Lewis while still having a suspended driver’s license under the name Kiara J. Lewis.

In an interview with police, Ms. Lewis stated she was not responsible for the differences in driver’s license names and said that the Secretary of State committed the error and never corrected the issue, according to police.

After she was processed and charged, police provided Ms. Lewis an escort to her residence in Richton Park. A copy of the report, Ms. Lewis’ driver’s license, and accompanying documents were forwarded to the Illinois Secretary of State for further explanation and investigation, according to the report.


Jomel A. Joiner, 22, 318 Douglas St., Park Forest, was arrested on July 19 and charged with battery after police were dispatched to the 300 block of Douglas Street to investigate a report of a disturbance.

Mr. Joiner allegedly scratched a woman’s arm, according to the report.

Operation of an Uninsured Motor Vehicle, DUI

Elizabeth P. Laskowski, 26, 4 Nassau Ct., Park Forest, was arrested on July 20 and issued traffic citations charging leaving the scene of an accident/vehicle damage, operation of an uninsured motor vehicle, and driving under the influence of alcohol when an officer was dispatched at 3:51 AM to the 200 block of Blackhawk Drive to investigate a vehicle collision.

SouthCom Dispatch advised of an OnStar notification that a customer’s vehicle was possibly involved in a head-on collision.

A resident on Blackhawk Drive witnessed the collision, according to police, and reported to dispatch that a woman who had been driving one of the vehicles was fleeing the area on foot.

Police located the woman, Elizabeth P. Lasowski, sitting on the ground in front of a home in the 200 block of Blackhawk Drive. According to police, she was crying “hysterically and repeatedly requesting officers to give her a cigarette,” according to the report.

Ms. Laskowski remained sitting on the ground while speaking with slurred speech, according to police. Police administered field sobriety tests to Ms. Laskowski and then took her into custody on suspicion of driving while under the influence of alcohol.

Aggravated Driving While License Was Revoked

James R. Pusateri Jr., 43, 360 Luxford Court South, Bourbonnais, IL, was arrested on July 20 and charged with aggravated driving while license was revoked (Class 4), no seatbelt, and operating an uninsured motor vehicle after an officer traveling north on Western Avenue toward 26th Street at 7:51 AM saw a red Ford Expedition stopped, facing west, in the left turn lane on 26th Street. The driver, later identified as James R. Pusateri Jr., was not wearing a seatbelt, according to police.

According to police, Mr. Pusateri said that he knew his license was revoked from a previous conviction of driving while under the influence.

A passenger in Mr. Pusateri’s vehicle was released without charges.

Mr. Pusateri was taken to the Park Forest Police Department and placed in a cell pending transport to Markham Courthouse for a mandatory bond hearing, according to police.