Park Forest, IL-(ENEWSPF)- Police charged a Richton Park teen with one felony count of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. This was after an officer saw the vehicle the teen drove allegedly turn at a red light without coming to a complete stop.
The 18-year-old, who said he was coming from playing basketball, appeared “fidgety,” the officer said in the report. This alleged nervousness prompted the officer to ask permission to search the teenager’s vehicle. The teen consented to the search, according to police.
Police also charged a man with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon by a person convicted of a felony during the same week.
These two reports follow.
Park Forest Police Blotter Reports Through July 24, 2023
Felony Aggravated UUW
Police charged Marco J. Walker, 27, 277 Allegheny St., Park Forest, on July 18 with two counts of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon by a person convicted of a felony, a traffic citation charging unlawful possession of cannabis in a motor vehicle, and one count of possession of stolen property.
Police responded to a home on Allegheny Street at 8 PM to investigate a report of an armed person waving a firearm, allegedly threatening people, according to police. The caller, who did not provide a name or location, reported that Marco Walker was in front of the home, allegedly armed with a handgun, according to police.
The caller also described Mr. Walker’s clothing, according to police. One of the responding officers knew of Mr. Walker from previous law enforcement encounters. According to the report, this officer knew that Mr. Walker had an outstanding parole warrant on a previous charge from the Illinois Department of Corrections.
The officer also knew that police established probable cause to arrest Mr. Walker in connection with an alleged motor vehicle theft, according to the report.
Man Allegedly Flees in a Car
When police arrived, the caller stated that Mr. Walker allegedly fled the area in a white vehicle, according to police. At 8:09 PM, according to the report, another officer reported via radio that he found Mr. Walker in a car on Arrowhead Court.
All officers responded and conducted a high-risk traffic stop on this car, a white 2019 Jeep Cherokee, according to police. A responding officer immediately recognized the driver as Mr. Walker, according to police.
Police Order Man and Passenger from Car at Gunpoint
Officers ordered Mr. Walker and a passenger out of the Jeep at gunpoint. Police took both into custody without resistance, according to police.
Officers approached the Jeep to confirm that no one else was inside. While doing so, one officer noted a strong odor of burnt cannabis inside the Jeep. One officer allegedly saw a hand-rolled cigar containing suspected cannabis on the front passenger floorboard, according to police.
Officers also found:
- One Smith & Wesson M&P Shield EZ .380 caliber handgun. This firearm was not loaded. According to the report, an officer conducted a computer inquiry and learned that someone in Chicago Heights had reported this firearm stolen.
- Police also found a Ruger EC9S 9-millimeter handgun with an obliterated serial number. This loaded firearm had six rounds of 9 mm ammunition, one round in the chamber, according to police.
- Police found a hand-rolled cigar containing suspect cannabis on the passenger floorboard of the vehicle.
- Police also found a multicolored Ziploc bag with about 2 grams of suspected cannabis, according to the report.
Police determined that the passenger, Jamiya J. Walton, 1117 N. Lawler Ave., Chicago, had an active warrant for her arrest from the Cook County Sheriff’s Office. This was on a charge of driving under the influence of alcohol, according to police.
Teen Charged with One Felony Count of Aggravated UUW
Police arrested Elija D. Garrett, 18, 21912 Main St., Richton Park, on July 19 and charged the teen with one felony count of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. Police also charged the teen with failure to stop at an intersection and no valid insurance.
An officer patrolling at 10:27 PM saw a silver Mazda make a right-hand turn at a red light from Beacon Boulevard onto Western Avenue. The officer reported the Mazda allegedly turned at the red light without coming to a complete stop, according to police. According to the report, the officer then saw the silver Mazda make an “abrupt right-hand turn” into the gas station in the 1700 block of Western Avenue in Chicago Heights.
The teenager said he was playing basketball.
The officer made contact with the driver, later identified as Elijah the Garrett, according to police. The teenager told the officer he just left a local park after playing basketball and was on his way home, according to police. The teen “displayed a sense of nervousness,” according to the report. The teen did not make eye contact, looked in his vehicle, “and was fidgety,” according to the report.
The officer asked the teen if he had any guns or drugs, and he allegedly replied that he did not, according to police.
Officer Finds a Firearm
The officer then asked for consent to search the vehicle. Mr. Garrett allegedly gave his consent, according to police.
The teen stepped out of the car.
The officer asked permission to conduct a patdown on his person, and the teen agreed, according to police.
While doing so, the officer felt a hard object on Mr. Garrett’s waistband. The officer recognized it as the handle of a handgun, according to police.
The officer held onto the handgun from outside of Mr. Garrett’s clothing while another officer placed him into handcuffs, according to police.
The first officer to contact Mr. Garrett retrieved the firearm from the teenager’s waistband and found one live round of ammunition in the chamber. The gun had a total of eight live rounds, according to police.
Police learned that Mr. Garrett did not have a valid FOID or a Concealed Carry License, according to police. The firearm was a Taurus 9 mm. A search showed the gun was clear, with no record, according to police.
About Police Reports
Please note that we repeatedly say “according to police” in these reports and often use “allegedly.” We are not asserting in any way that those police arrested and charged committed any offenses. We report on what is in the reports that the police furnish to us. As those accused are innocent until proven guilty, the burden is on prosecutors and police to prove all alleged crimes.
eNews Park Forest has continuously published the 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 charged, including their name, age, and address. This information is necessary to ensure the proper identity of those arrested.
Presumption of Innocence
An arrest does not mean that a person is guilty. The law presumes all those who police arrest are innocent until proven guilty. It is the policy of eNews Park Forest to not remove items in the public record from publication. Suppose you find your name in the police reports. Our policy is that 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.
We do not strike, “unpublish,” or delete news.
Police captured all the incidents in this report on body-worn and dash-mounted cameras by officers at the respective scenes, according to police. All Park Forest police officers wear body-worn cameras. Officials abbreviate these devices typically as BWC in the reports.
We encourage persons wishing to leave anonymous information on any criminal matters, including narcotics or gang activity, to call the Park Forest Police Department Investigations Division at (708) 748-1309.