Monday, May 13, 2013
A woman allegedly beaten in her home said she has been called by her attacker's family, a prosecutor said.
A woman allegedly beaten during a February home invasion has been called by family of her attacker, a prosecutor said during a Thursday morning hearing at the Bridgeview courthouse. Cook County Judge Colleen Hyland warned defendant Ralph Grajek that contacting the alleged victim in such a way "could amount to a new charge" or a higher bond. Grajek, 46, is already being held at the Cook County jail in lieu of $200,000 bond. He allegedly broke down the door of a Palos Township woman's house and attacked her. The woman was a former girlfriend, a source said, and Grajek broke her collar bone before fleeing her home. Grajek also reportedly tore a phone off the wall when she tried to call the police. The law caught up to Grajek about a week …
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Lawyers for one of four charged with brutally murdering a Palos Township couple received files and photo disks.
The lawyers for the youngest of four pals charged with the brutal murder of a Palos couple received medical files and photo evidence during a brief hearing Monday morning at the Bridgeview courthouse. Alleged getaway driver Mohammad Salahat, 18, was taken from the Cook County jail to the courthouse for the hearing. He beamed at two women in the gallery as he was led into the courtroom. Salahat was charged with murder in connection with the September 2011 slayings of John and Maria Granat. The couple was found beaten and stabbed to death in the blood-spattered bedroom of their Palos Township home. But Salahat, who was 16 at the time of the slayings, was merely the wheelman for a murder crew, police said. The Granat's son, John Granat, 19—…
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
The lawyer for Kevin Skaritka said Tuesday in court that his client may be seeing even more charges, while still facing two unrelated sex crime cases.
An Orland Park man facing a pair of unrelated sex crime cases may have even more charges coming down the pike, his lawyer said. "I believe that the state is still looking into the possibility of new charges," Robert Callahan, the attorney for Kevin Skaritka, told Cook County Judge John Joseph Hynes during a Tuesday morning hearing at the Bridgeview courthouse. Investigators are also still probing Skaritka's computer. Hynes set a June 3 date for Skaritka's next appearance. Skaritka, 37, was supposed to go on trial in September for allegedly molesting—and exposing himself to—his girlfriend's teenage daughter. But that case was pushed back when he caught new charges for allegedly attempting to exchange naked pictures with a 14-year-old girl …
Saturday, April 20, 2013
A former Plainfield North gym teacher pleaded guilty to meeting a teen for sex. And that was just one of the things going on in court this week.
More than two years after the police caught her in a car with a half-dressed student from the high school where she was a teacher, Ashley Blumenshine copped a plea. Blumenshine, a 30-year-old former Plainfield North gym teacher, will have to do 11 days in jail. She will also spend two years on sex offender probation and 10 yeas on the Illinois sex offender registry. She tearfully apologized before she was taken into custody to start doing her time. Let's look at what else was going on in the area's courthouses this past week: Check out all these stories and more on our Facebook page.
Saturday, April 6, 2013
A New Lenox man spoke of his "horrific" ordeal in the county jail after he was arrested for a murder someone else was wanted for.
We started the week off by talking with the New Lenox man jailed for two weeks for a murder allegedly committed by someone else with the same name. Pedro Hernandez, 67, said his time in the Will County jail was "horrific," and that he's looking for a lawyer to talk to about filing a lawsuit. But Hernandez's ordeal was just one of the things going on last week. There was also: Check out all these stories and more on our Facebook page.
Thursday, April 4, 2013
The lawyer for a teen charged with murder in connection with the brutal slaying of a friend's parents tried and failed to have the case dismissed.
The lawyer for the youngest of four pals charged with the brutal murder of a Palos couple failed to convince a judge to dismiss the case against his client. Joel Brodsky, the attorney for 18-year-old Mohammad Salahat, argued during a Thursday morning hearing at the Bridgeview courthouse that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that juveniles cannot be sentenced to life in prison without parole. Salahat was 16—legally a juvenile—when he was charged as an adult with the September 2011 murders of John and Maria Granat. If convicted of the double murder, Salahat faces a sentence of life in prison, Brodsky said, and therefore the case against him must be dismissed. Assistant State's Attorney Donna Norton called Brodsky's argument "both irrational and …
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
The alleged triggerman jailed in connection with last week's 7-Eleven parking lot murder appeared at the Bridgeview courthouse and was sent back to jail without a bond.
The Markham teen charged with gunning down a man he met through Craigslist to barter electronic equipment appeared at the Bridgeview courthouse Tuesday morning and was sent back to jail without a bond. READ: Markham Teen Charged With Murder in 7-Eleven Shooting Christopher Dyson, 18, faces murder and armed robbery charges in connection with Thursday's fatal shooting of 24-year-old Thomas Mastro of Tinley Park. Dyson and Mastro reportedly met outside a Tinley Park 7-Eleven so Dyson could trade his iPhone for Mastro's Playstation 3 and Playstation Vita. The deal reportedly was set up after Mastro posted an ad on Craigslist. READ: Tinley Park Man Fatally Shot in Argument in Store Parking Lot Dyson tried to rip Mastro off, then pulled a gun …
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
If you've got wit, add your punchline to Patch's weekly comic and win a personalized print.
Are you blessed with insight and good humor? Or just bored today? Share your wit with your south suburban neighbors by entering Patch's comic caption challenge. Just add your dialogue for today's comic in the comment section of this post. Our only requirement is that you keep it clean! At week's end, we'll pick the winning punchline based on how many of us here at Patch giggle and smile at your contribution. The user who produces the winning punchline will get a personalized proof of the comic, with the winning words and a credit line, from cartoonist Chuck Ingwersen and Patch. Congratulations to O.L. Taxpayer, with the winning caption to last week's Poker Dog cartoon: Hey Butch, just a hint. Stop wagging your tail when you get a good "…
Friday, March 8, 2013
Three of the four young men charged with the vicious 2011 murder of John and Maria Granat appeared in court Friday.
Prosecutors got the go-ahead to have Illinois State Police technicians perform DNA testing on a shred of T-shirt allegedly worn by a Bridgeview man when he helped a pal kill his parents. The portion of 18-year-old Christopher Wyma's shirt will be destroyed by the testing, prosecutors said. Wyma's attorney, Dan Nolan, did not object to the procedure. Nolan said there would still be more shirt remaining and the fabric bears additional stains that also can be tested. Wyma was taken from the Cook County jail to the Bridgeview Courthouse for the brief hearing along with co-defendants John Granat, 18, of Palos Township, and Ehab Qasem, 21, of Hickory Hills. A fourth defendant, Mohammad Salahat, 18, of Chicago Ridge, appeared in court alone a …
Monday, February 25, 2013
The lawyers for 18-year-ol Mohammad Salahat also have issues with the search of his cell phone.
When he was arrested after allegedly driving the getaway car for friends charged with beating and stabbing a Palos couple to death in October 2011, Mohammad Salahat was a student at Oak Lawn Community High School. After a year and three months in jail, Salahat's lawyers asked Cook County Judge Neil Linehan if the 18-year-old can continue his studies. The lawyers also set an April date to argue for the suppression of a statement Salahat supposedly made about the murders of the parents of his friend, John Granat, 18, and over issues with the search of Salahat's cell phone. Salahat and Granat, along with Ehab Qasem, 21, of Hickory Hills and Christopher Wyma, 18, of Bridgeview, all face murder charges for allegedly beating and stabbing Granat'…