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Shop 'Til You Drop (Someone): Weird Crimes

Cops catch a cold case in New Lenox • Victoria's Secret notice alerts 95-year-old woman to identity theft • Man with a rifle has spotty memory • A grinch steals Christmas decorations ... This week's roundup of weird crime news in the Southland.

Serious Shoppers


Nov. 29: A fight involving about 20 people happened early Friday morning at Orland Square Mall, but was broken up by police before it escalated.

Two groups of people described as youths started an altercation around 12:35 a.m., according to Orland Park Police Commander John Keating. About 20 people were involved in the dispute, Keating wrote in an email.

“We had an officer on scene who broke it up, and the all fled the area,” Keating wrote on Friday. “No victims have come forward.”

Extra officers were called in to watch the area after the fight broke up, according to Keating.

No one has been arrested or cited as a result of the altercation as of Saturday.

Read more on Orland Park Patch


A Cold Case


Nov. 8: The New Lenox police carted a man off to the county jail after he allegedly put a beer on the leg of a girl.

Dale Brandt, 55, allegedly accosted the girl shortly after 10 p.m.

Brandt "made physical contact with a minor of an insulting or provoking nature," police said.

Brandt made this contact with the child while they were at the 301 W. Maple St. Speedway gas station, police said.

According to court papers, Brandt "placed a cold beer on her leg."

Brandt resides at 708 E. Joliet Highway in New Lenox, according to county jail records. But the New Lenox police said he lives at 373 Western Ave. in Joliet.

County jail records show Brandt was booked Nov. 15 on a charge of felony aggravated battery. According to court records, he appeared before a judge Nov. 16 on a misdemeanor battery charge.

Brandt was released from jail after posting $1,500 bond.

Read more on New Lenox Patch


A Thief’s Secret Is Out


Dec. 2: A woman in her 90s living in Tinley Park discovered her identity was stolen after receiving a letter refusing to extend the limit on a Victoria's Secret credit card.

The 95-year-old woman's son, who also lives in Tinley Park, contacted police after learning about the letter and about a Citi MasterCard in her mother's name that had a $5,200 balance, according to a report. He told police that credit card had not been used since Jan. 31, 2011, when the old card expired.

A letter sent to the woman from Victoria's Secret state that it was denying a request to increase the limit on a credit card with the lingerie store, according to a Tinley Park police report. The notice state that the account was opened too recently to warrant an increase.

The woman's son contact the agencies that supplied the credit cards and informed them about the fraud, the report states. He told police that he only wanted the incidents documented.

Read more on Tinley Park Patch


Selective Memory for Man With Rifle


Nov. 29: An Indiana man told cops he didn't know how he ended up pounding on an Oak Forest home after a night of drinking in a different state.

Timothy W. Carlson, 20, of the 7800 block of Jackson Avenue, Munster, was charged with unlawful use of a weapon and cited for underage drinking, according to an Oak Forest report.

Oak Forest police were called on a report of someone banging on the door of a home in the 5300 block of Christopher Drive, the report states.

When police arrived, they found Carlson at about 1:43 a.m. on Nov. 29, sitting in his black Chevy that was parked nearby, the report states. On the passenger seat, cops saw a black .22-caliber Ruger rifle with a loaded magazine.

Carlson also had a strong odor of alcohol on his breath, the report states. He told police that he was drinking with friends in Indiana and didn't know how he ended up in Oak Forest. The rifle belongs to Carlson, which he said he uses to shoot squirrels and rabbits.

Carlson is due on Jan. 3 in Bridgeview court.

Read more on Oak Forest Patch


Grinch Sought for Questioning


Nov. 30: A cold-hearted crook looted a Green Garden shed, absconding with about $15,000 worth of holiday decorations less than a month before Christmas.

The thief—or thieves—struck in the 10000 block of West Stuenkel Road, entering a shed and making off with an "extensive collection of Christmas decorations," police said.

"Listed missing was a lighted plastic Nativity scene with 15 pieces, about 45 lighted plastic nutcracker figures, 10 lighted plastic penguins, 10 lighted plastic snowmen, 25 strings of multicolored LED chaser lights, 75 strings of regular lights, five heavy duty 150-foot extension cords and 50 heavy duty 100-foot extension cords," police said.

Read more on New Lenox Patch


Are you a fan of true crime? Like the Crime-n-Shame Facebook page for tales of mischief and woe from all over the Chicago area.

Police report information is provided by local police departments. Charges are not evidence of guilt. They are a record of police actions on a given day, and persons charged with a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty in court. If you or a family member are charged or cited and the case is subsequently adjudicated, we encourage you to notify the editor. We will verify and report the outcome.

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