Zion Man Charged in Beach Park Shooting
On January 30, 2016, at approximately 2:45AM,
Lake County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to the 9800 block of West Oak Forest
Drive, Beach Park, for a fight in progress, with shots fired. When
sheriff’s deputies arrived they learned multiple people involved the fight fled
the scene. Sheriff’s deputies determined the physical altercation
occurred between two rival gangs and the shots were fired just prior to the
arrival of sheriff’s deputies.
The individual responsible for firing the gun
fled and was no longer at the scene when sheriff’s deputies arrived.
Sheriff’s Office Evidence Technicians arrived at the scene, located and
collected numerous shell casings, as well as other evidence.
The Lake County Sheriff’s Gang Task Force
began an immediate investigation into this incident. Through their
investigation, the Gang Task Force determined the individual responsible for
firing the gun was Eric Bickwermert, 27, of the 1500 block of Lorelei Drive,
Zion, a registered street gang member.
On February 2, 2016, the Lake County Gang
Task Force transported Bickwermert to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Criminal
Investigations Division, where he was subsequently arrested and charged.
Bickwermert was subsequently charged with:
- Unlawful Use of a Weapon by a Street Gang
Member (Class 2 Felony)
- Unlawful Use of a Weapon by a Felon (Class 2
- Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon – No FOID
Card (Class 2 Felony)
- Reckless Discharge of a Firearm (Class 4
Bickwermert is currently being held at the
Lake County Jail on $75,000.00 bail. He is due in Court on February 10,
2016 at 9:00AM, in Courtroom C-120.
Sheriff Curran reminds the public that the
defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Superbowl Weekend Traffic Safety Results
Lake County Sheriff’s Deputies worked two
extra seat belt patrols and two extra DUI patrols during Super Bowl weekend (February 5-7, 2016).
The extra patrols resulted in a DUI arrest, two drug arrests, 12 seat belt citations,
for a total of 63 citations issued for traffic safety violations.
The Lake County Sheriff’s Office will
continue extra enforcement with IDOT funds in the months of February and March,
focusing on DUI enforcement.
“The Lake County Sheriff’s Office
aggressively enforces drunk driving laws every day. Don’t risk the lives
of others, or your own life, designate a sober driver before drinking” added
Undersheriff Ray Rose.
The extra enforcement details are funded
through a grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway
Administration. The grant is administered by the Illinois Department of
Transportation’s Division of Traffic Safety.
Lake County Residents Invited to Participate in Sheriff's Citizen Police Academy
Lake County Sheriff Mark C.
Curran, Jr. is pleased to announce the next Citizen Police Academy begins March
17, 2016. Participants will have the opportunity to see first-hand how
the Sheriff’s Office maintains law and order for Lake County residents.
The Academy is a 10-week long
program with classes held each Thursday evening beginning March 17, 2016.
Classes begin at 6:30 p.m. and end at 9:30 p.m. Instruction is provided by
sworn deputies and civilians in their field of expertise and is designed to
provide a hands-on experience. Training takes place at the various
Sheriff’s Office facilities throughout the county, including the Lake County
Courthouse and Lake County Jail located in Waukegan, as well as the Highway
Patrol Division located in Libertyville. Upon completing the 10-week program,
students graduate on May 26, 2016.
The Academy is offered free of
charge to Lake County residents. Participants must be 21 years of age or
older, be of good moral character, and have no felony convictions.
Applications are available at
the Lake County Sheriff’s Administration Office located at 25 S. Martin Luther
King Jr. Avenue in Waukegan, on the Lake County website at http://tinyurl.com/z5q2tu7. If you have any questions you can contact
Community Services at 847.377.4211.
Unincorporated Zion Shooting
On February 7, 2016 at approximately 1:40AM,
Lake County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to Pinsters Bowling Alley, 1646
Sheridan Road, Unincorporated Zion, for a report of a person with a gun.
When sheriff’s deputies arrived, they located several hundred people fleeing
from the bowling alley, and learned shots had been fired. Lake County
Sheriff’s Deputies, along with officers from Winthrop Harbor Police Department
and Zion Police Department, set up a perimeter around the scene to search for
victims and offenders.
Sheriff’s deputies located a shooting victim
who was shot in the leg and the head. Lake County Sheriff’s Deputy
Michael Platt administered life-saving measures and applied a tourniquet to the
victim’s leg, stopping the blood loss. The victim was transported via
ambulance to a local hospital. He is expected to survive.
Preliminary investigation revealed the
shooting was likely gang related, following a dispute between rival gang
members. Sheriff’s detectives and members of the Lake County Sheriff’s
Gang Task Force continue to investigate the shooting.
Anyone with information regarding this
incident is encouraged to call the Lake County Sheriff’s Office at (847)
549-5200 or the Lake County Sheriff’s Gang Task Force Tip-Line at (847) 377-4424.
Lake County Sheriff's Office Alerts Businesses of Salon Burglaries
The Lake County Sheriff’s Office is alerting
Lake County businesses of an increase in burglaries. Over the last
several weeks, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office has seen an increase in
burglaries to businesses, specifically targeting salons. These have been
occurring throughout Lake County and neighboring counties, during the evening
and overnight hours.
During these incidents, the offender(s) have
primarily gained access to the salons by using force (breaking a window/forcing
the door open). The burglaries have occurred throughout Lake County and
haven’t been limited to a specific geographical region.
“To reduce the risk of loss, remove cash and
expensive valuables from your business every night,” said Sheriff Mark
Undersheriff Ray Rose said, “We encourage
business owners to take proactive measures and utilize burglar alarms/video
surveillance systems. Additionally, members of the public should report
any suspicious activity by dialing 9-1-1.”
Additional safety tips include:
Ensuring there is ample lighting both
inside and outside of the business, while the business is open and closed
Having a secure safe to house
cash/valuables when it’s necessary to leave them overnight
Reinforce door frames
Utilizing door locks with deadbolts
Lake County Sheriff’s Detectives are working
with other area police detectives to locate those responsible for the
burglaries. Anyone with information surrounding the burglaries is
encouraged to contact the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations
Division at 847-377-4250 or Lake County Crime Stoppers at 847-662-2222.
The Lake County Sheriff’s Office provides
business security surveys to businesses located in sheriff’s patrol
areas. These surveys help business owners identify areas where security
can be enhanced at a business. If interested in a business security
survey, please contact the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Community Services Unit
Lake County Sheriff Announces Illinois Sheriff's Association Scholarship
Sheriff Mark Curran announced the Illinois Sheriff's Association
will be awarding a $500 college scholarship to a local student seeking to
pursue higher education during the 2016-2017 academic year. The scholarship is
to be applied to tuition, books and fees only. The student must be enrolled
full-time at a certified institution of higher learning within the State of
Those applying for the scholarship must meet the following
- Applicants must be permanent
- Scholarship must be utilized at
an institution of higher learning within Illinois
- Student must be enrolled as a
full-time student during the 2016-2017 school year (excluding summer
Guidelines include submission of a 350-word essay. This year's
essay question focuses on the heroin epidemic locally and nationally.
Applications are now available at the Lake County Sheriff’s Office or on the
website at http://tinyurl.com/htnwm7j.
Students must complete the application; answer the essay question and return
all documentation to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office; 25 S Martin Luther King
Jr Avenue in Waukegan, IL by March 15, 2016 (must be postmarked by this date.)