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Burbank Police responded to Supercuts, 4834 W 79th Street, after an employee said she was robbed outside the hair salon.
According to police, the employee was returning to Supercuts around 1:30 p.m. on Nov. 16, after making a bank withdrawal at a nearby Chase branch.
The woman told police that as she was parking her car, she noticed a suspicious looking vehicle drive into the strip mall's parking lot. The woman said the vehicle appeared to be a dark gray Pontiac Bonneville or Grand Prix without license plates.
The employee said she exited her car and was walking toward Supercuts when a man approached her and grabbed the blue Chase currency bag she was carrying containing $208 of the store’s money. The man then ran off and jumped into the rear passenger door of the suspicious vehicle, which fled eastbound on West 79th Street.
An area resident that saw the suspect vehicle speed off told police he observed the same car, occupied by three men, parked earlier near the Chase branch where the employee made the withdrawal.
The victim described the alleged robber as a black man in his early 20s, about 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighing 150 pounds, thin build, wearing a gray hoodie — which was pulled over his head, and gray sweatpants.
The woman and two other witnesses said they did not get a look at the suspect’s face and would be unable to identify the man if they saw him again.
Burbank police conducted an investigation at the scene and coordinated a neighborhood canvass but said nothing of evidentiary value was discovered. Video surveillance in the area did not capture the incident.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call the Burbank Police Department at 708-924-7300 or leave an anonymous message on the police tip line at 708-793-3388.
The following incidents were listed among the official reports of the Burbank Police Department. Readers are reminded that an arrest by the police does not constitute a finding of guilt. Only a court of law can determine whether an offender is guilty or not guilty of the offense with which he or she has been charged.
Superintendent Jason Gustafson of the South Stickney Sanitary District is warning Burbank residents to be alert for scam artists claiming to be water works employees.
“This week our department received two calls from customers regarding people impersonating water department employees attempting to gain access to their homes,” Gustafson said.
Burbank police are investigating one of those incidents in which two men conned their way into a senior citizen's home.
According to Division Chief Mike Dudlo, the incident had all the earmarks of a ruse-entry burglary, although nothing was taken on this occasion.
Dudlo said the elderly Burbank woman received a call from a man purporting to be from the water department who told her workers needed to conduct a water purification test in her home. A short time later, the woman admitted two men into her home to conduct the test. The men left the home after the woman and a companion became suspicious and insisted they leave.
“They were lucky because these two subjects were criminals who were looking for the opportunity to distract the residents. One of the subjects would have remained in one room with the residents while the other would go through the bedrooms and steal any valuables they can, usually money and jewelry," Dudlo said. “The criminals usually target the elderly. Unfortunately, the elderly are very trusting and willing to cooperate.”
According to Gustafson, the homeowners were elderly Polish-American citizens in the two incidents that he was aware of.
Gustafson urges homeowners to ask workers for identification before letting them in. “My employees will always be in South Stickney Sanitary District vehicles. The name will clearly be marked on the side of the vehicle. They will also be in uniform with an ID stating their name and picture on it.”
Gustafson said that residents may contact the Sanitary District at 708-424-6030 to verify the credentials of any worker claiming to be from the water department.
Dudlo said caution is warranted anytime someone claiming to work for a utility company shows up unsolicited — if in doubt, lock your door, make note of vehicle information, call 911 and the police will send over an officer to investigate.
“If you know some elderly citizens or neighbors, please share this information with them,” Dudlo said. “In many instances, these types of public service announcements do not reach the target audience due to technology not being accessible to them.”
A Burbank man was arrested Tuesday night after a call he allegedly placed to police turned out to be a hoax.
Burbank police were dispatched to a home in the 7500 block of South Mason Avenue on Nov. 30 at 11:10 p.m. in response to a call of a home invasion. The caller told police that residents were being held hostage by three men with guns.
According to Burbank Division Chief Mike Dudlo, responding officers determined all residents of the home were safe and found no evidence of a crime.
Police later established the 911 call originated from a neighboring residence. “Upon investigation, it was learned a person within this residence made the false calls to police,” Dudlo said.
Burbank police say the man who made the bogus call was Mohammad Abid, 19 of 7500 block of S. Mason Avenue.
Dudlo said, "[Abid] fabricated the entire story but did not give a clear reason for doing so."
Abid was charged with felony disorderly conduct. He appeared Wednesday at the Cook County courthouse in Bridgeview where a judge set bail at $75,000.
Burbank police responded to a similar incident last July in which the caller claimed that a person had been shot inside a home in the 7700 block of South Parkside Avenue. Police determined that incident to be a hoax as well.