South Suburban DUI Arrests, Feb. 10

If an officer asks for your license, he's probably not looking for a stare down—but that's exactly what one alleged drunken driver offered cops, this week in Southland drunken driving arrest reports.



Feb. 4: Damen L. Ingram, of the 23400 block of Western Avenue in Park Forest was arrested and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol after police stopped him near the intersection of Euclid and Main Street for turning without signaling, according to the report.

When asked for his license and proof of insurance, Ingram silently stared at the officer, police said. Asked a second time, Ingram handed police his identification card, then went back to staring with a blank expression. The officer clarified that he needed Ingram's driver's license, not a state ID, and Ingram handed him his license. Police could smell alcohol on his breath, according to the report. The officer then noticed a plastic bag, containing a "crushed green leafy substance," in a tray between the seats and asked Ingram to hand it over.

"It's just a little bit," Ingram told police. "I haven't even smoked yet."

Police then had Ingram take field sobriety tests, one of which involved standing on one leg. While performing the test Ingram counted aloud, "One-thousand two, one-thousand three, one-thousand three, one-thousand three, one-thousand five," according to the report. He then put his foot down and said, "That's it." Ingram was taken into custody, falling asleep on the way to the police station, according to the report. 

Ingram racked up additional charges of failing to signal when required, speeding and no proof of insurance, police said. The green substance tested positive for cannabis, according to the report.

Ingram is scheduled to appear at Markham Courthouse on Tuesday, Feb. 26.

Feb. 2: Blanca N. Garcia, 33, of the 700 block of Campbell Avenue, was arrested and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol after police stopped her near the intersection of 19th Street and Chicago Road for driving without headlights on, according to the report. Police then discovered Garcia's driver's license had been revoked and took her into custody, at which time she was asked to perform field sobriety test, according to the report. Garcia failed the tests. Police searched Garcia while she was in custody and discovered a clear plastic bag containing a substance that tested positive for cocaine, according to the report. Garcia racked up additional charges of driving without lights when required, having a blood alcohol content above .08, seat belt not fastened, no insurance and revoked driver's license, police said.


Feb. 2: Freddie Hughes, 52, of the 6900 block of S. Carpenter Street, Chicago, was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol and improper lane usage, following a stop in the 6000 block of W. 147th Street.

While on patrol, officers observed the vehicle Hughes was driving swerving in its lane from left to right. Officers noted Hughes was slow and deliberate with his movements and his speech was slurred and mumbled. Hughes told officers he was heading 'east' to a friend's house in Hyde Park, but officers noted he was traveling away from Hyde Park at the time of the stop.

Officers put Hughes through field sobriety tests, which he failed, according to the report.

Hughes was taken into custody and transported to the Oak Forest Police Department, where he was charged and processed. At the station, Hughes refused to submit a breath sample to police. Hughes was released on bond, pending an upcoming court date.


Jan. 12:  Police pulled over a car for changing lanes without signaling and rolling past the white stop line at a red light on 82nd Avenue at 151st Street around 4:10 a.m. The driver fumbled with his license, he spoke with a slurred speech, his breath smelled like alcohol and he declined to perform field sobriety tests, police said. When asked why the inside of his vehicle smelled like alcohol, he picked up a Sobe brand drink in a plastic bottle, according to the report. Police found an active warrant for his arrest out of DuPage County for driving under the influence of alcohol. Rodney A. Madison, 23, of the 17600 block of Iroquois Trace in Tinley Park, was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, failure to signal, driving without a front license plate and disobeying a traffic control light. He was also arrested on a warrant for driving under the influence of alcohol.

Jan. 12: Police pulled over a car after seeing it drive over center lane lines, and swerve hard to avoid missing a raised median, in the 16000 block of LaGrange Road around 3:05 a.m. The vehicle smelled like alcohol inside, the driver’s speech was slurred and he failed field sobriety tests, police said. Robert M. Morley Jr., 63, of the 6200 block of Hamilton Lane in La Crescenta, Calif., was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, driving under the influence with a blood-alcohol level greater than .08, improper lane use and driving an uninsured vehicle.


Feb. 2: Hassan A. Kurdi, 23, of the 9100 block of Crescent Court in Oak Lawn, was charged with driving without insurance, speeding and two counts of driving under the influence, according to a police report. Investigating officers allegedly found Kurdi to be under the influence of alcohol. He later took a breathalyzer test, which showed a blood-alcohol level greater than 0.08.


Jan. 29: Anthony J. Variola, 36, of Evergreen Park, was charged driving under the influence of alcohol and DUI over .08. Police said that Variola attracted officers’ attention by driving 50mph in a 30mph zone, and not coming to a complete stop when making a right turn on red on to 95th Street from Austin Avenue, until his car came to a stop at Menard Avenue and 95th Street. Police said Variola’s eyes were bloodshot and glassy, and emanated a strong odor of alcohol. Variola allegedly told police that he had “3 to 4 beers” and refused a preliminary Breathalyzer test. He was arrested and taken to the Oak Lawn police station, where police said he blew a .109. Variloa was also citied for multiple traffic violations, including driving with no lights, speeding, disobeying a stoplight, no proof of insurance and using a vehicle for illegal activities.

Jan. 27: Ronald W. Briski, 65, of Evergreen Park was charged with DUI and DUI over .08 when police spotted his Jetta swerving over the marker several times between Keeler Avenue and Pulaski Road at 12:12 a.m., reports said. Officers pulled Briski over at 95th Street and Avers Avenue. Briski said he was driving home from an Oak Lawn bar and restaurant after having “two or three beers.” Police said Briski stumbled several times and lost balance while performing field sobriety tests. Briski blew a .202 at the Oak Lawn police station. He has a court appearance at the Bridgeview Courthouse on Feb. 28.

Jan. 27: Thomas Degrado, 46, of Chicago, was charged with a DUI and other traffic violations when police said he increased his speed to 54mph in a 30mph zone around 111th Street and Pulaski Road. Degrado told police he was driving home from a bar after having “a couple of cocktails,” according to the report. He was taken into custody for DUI. Police said he refused to blow and argued with detention officers. He was charged with DUI and cited for failure to signal, speeding, improper lane usage, no proof of insurance and using a vehicle for illegal activities. Degrado has a date with a judge at the Bridgeview Courthouse on Feb. 28.

Jan. 25: Brenda M. Santora-Smith, 61, of Midlothian, got delayed on her way home from work after a village employee called police to report a “female reckless driver” driving a 1995 Olds Cutlass that was “all over the road” around 1:10 p.m. Santora-Smith had been reported resting in an intersection at 52nd Avenue and 102nd Street, police said. The village employee followed Santora-Smith’s car as she drove northbound on 52nd Avenue where she continued to swerve into the oncoming southbound laneuntil she stopped on 9700 block of 52nd Street, several feet away from the curb, reports said. The village employee knocked on the woman’s side window several times who noted that Santora-Smith had difficulty responding. When police arrived, she provided a traffic citation from Posen for ID. Santora-Smith allegedly told police that she had a wine cooler for lunch with her prescription medication. Police searched Santora-Smith’s car who said she had an empty bottle of St. Ides malt liquor in her lap, and a bottle of doctor-prescribed Enalapril in her purse. A warning on the bottle said it may cause drowsiness and blurred vision, and to not take when operating a car, the report said. Santora-Smith blew a .000 at the police station. She was charged with DUI-drugs, stopping in an intersection, driving in the wrong lane, no proof of insurance and using a vehicle with illegal activities. She has a court appearance in Bridgeview on Feb. 28.

What to Read Next:

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  • Former L-Way Teacher Up on Threat Charge Needs Psych Exam: Lawyer, on New Lenox Patch
  • Snitch in Jailhouse Hit Man Case Popped on Domestic Battery Rap, on New Lenox Patch

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.

Madrdd February 10, 2013 at 05:18 PM
What happened to the panhandler in Tinley/Orland. I thought he had a court hearing in Bridgeview, any updates?
Cheryl Walker February 11, 2013 at 03:53 AM
Enalapril (Vasotec) is used to treat high blood pressure, congestive heart failure and to improve survival after a heart attack.


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