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Lake County Cybercrime Unit Works To Protect Children

The Lake County Sheriff's Office Cybercrime Unit pursues online predators who seek to meet underage children and those who possess inappropriate images and videos of children. Follow these officers as they conduct a search warrant for a man believed to be in possession of child pornography. Persons placed under arrest are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. 
       Woman Charged with Falsifying Report near Fox Lake Investigation

On September 3, 2015 at approximately 9:20PM, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a suspicious circumstance.  The caller, Kristin B. Kiefer (30), of the 0-100 block of Tanwood Court, Vernon Hills, indicated she was traveling northbound on Route 12 south of Route 120 in Volo, when she pulled to the side of the roadway, due to car trouble.  Shortly after pulling to the side of the road, Kiefer said she saw two adult male subjects (one male white and one male black) near a cornfield, on the side of the road.  The caller reported the two subjects attempted to gain access to her vehicle, but then fled into the cornfield, because they feared she was calling the police.

When Lake County Sheriff’s Deputies responded, they immediately set up a perimeter.  In addition to Lake County Sheriff’s Deputies, approximately 85 federal, state, and local law enforcement officers responded to the scene to search for the subjects.  Additionally, 11 canine units and three air support units assisted in the search.  Canines were unable to detect a scent and air units were unable to locate anybody in the areas searched.  The area was searched for approximately five hours.

Initially, Kiefer maintained her accounts of the events were factual.  Through further investigation by Lake County Sheriff’s Detectives and the Lake County Major Crime Task Force, it was learned Kiefer lied about the entire account of her events.  Kiefer informed detectives she fabricated the events as she wanted attention from a family where she is employed as a nanny.  Additionally, she indicated she chose this location to fabricate the event, as she was aware of the death of a police officer in the area.

Kiefer was subsequently charged with two counts of Disorderly Conduct – Falsifying a Police Report (Class 4 Felony and Class A Misdemeanor).  She is currently being held at the Lake County Jail pending a bond hearing.

Fox Lake Incident Upate

Immediately following the initial response of today’s events, a massive search effort was conducted in an effort to apprehend the three suspects.  The primary search area consisted of an approximately 2 square mile area.  In addition to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office and Fox Lake Police Department, the search included numerous local law enforcement officers from northern Illinois, Illinois State Police, and federal agencies.  The search also involved multiple local and federal SWAT Teams, 48 canine units, and six air support units.  The search lasted approximately 14 hours.  As of just after 10:00PM the perimeter has been released and the scene has been turned over to the Lake County Major Crime Task Force (LCMCTF).  LCMCTF will be the lead agency conducting this investigation.

Lake County Sheriff’s Office and Illinois State Police (ISP) will actively maintain saturation patrols in the Fox Lake Area.  LCSO, ISP, and other police agencies will have an increased presence at all area schools. 

As a result of community concerns, the following area schools will be closed tomorrow:

Grant Community High School District #124

Fox Lake Grade School District #114

Gavin School District #37

Gavin Central School

Gavin South School

Big Hollow School District #38

Saint Bede Catholic School

All tips and leads from the community should be directed to the Fox Lake Police Department at 847-587-3100.  

Chicago Man Arrested for Making Bomb Threat

On August 25, 2015, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office responded to an electronic threat complaint.  The victim reported she had been receiving threatening messages via Facebook from an individual identified as James R. Childress (29), of the 1700 block of 67th Street, Chicago. 

James Childress.JPGLake County Sheriff’s Detectives became involved in the investigation and learned the threats the victim had been receiving were directed at Concordia University, located in River Forest, IL.  Childress had been threatening to “blow up” a building at Concordia University with a homemade bomb.  Upon learning this information Detectives immediately contacted Concordia University and River Forest Police Department to make them aware of the situation.

On August 26th, Detectives located Childress at his residence.  Childress admitted to Detectives he was responsible for the threatening messages sent to the victim.  He indicated he was upset with Concordia University because his application to become a student was denied. 

Childress was subsequently charged with Disorderly Conduct – Making a Bomb Threat (Class 3 Felony) and Electronic Harassment (Class B Misdemeanor).  The Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) assisted in this investigation.

The investigation is ongoing and additional charges are possible.  Childress is currently being held at the Lake County Jail on $150,000.00 bond.  His next court date is scheduled for September 3, 2015 at 1:30PM in Courtroom C-120. 

Missing Endangered Man in Unincorporated Antioch

Helton 1.jpg

James Helton, a 39 year old male, was reported missing from the area of Route 45 and Route 173 in unincorporated Antioch.  Helton was reported missing on August 17th at approximately 7:30PM by family members.  Helton has been missing since Saturday, August 15th and is believed to be on foot in the wooded areas.  Helton is reported to have made suicidal statements. LCSO Deputies spotted Helton in the area of Russell Road and Frontage Road on August 18th at approximately 3:45AM.  Deputies attempted to make contact with Helton, however, he began running westbound through a heavily wooded area.  Canine units and AIR-ONE Emergency Response Coalition responded to the scene, however, Helton could not be located. 

Helton was last seen wearing black and grey checkered pajama pants and a black tank top, although it is possible he changed into a red t-shirt.  Helton has tattoos on his neck (red lips), right arm (Jordan Air symbol), back (words: Jesse James), and chest (word: Caylee).  He is 5 feet 11 inches and 190 lbs.  He has brown hair and brown eyes.  He has a full beard that is a reddish/brown mix.  His beard has grey hair in the area of his chin. 

If Helton is located, please contact 911 immediately and don’t approach him.

Sheriff Issues Telephone Scam Alert

slamthescam.jpgThe Lake County Sheriff’s Office has received reports of Lake County residents receiving fraudulent telephone calls from individuals representing themselves to be from the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.  These fraudulent calls are appearing on the recipients’ caller identification as telephone numbers used by the Sheriff’s Office.  Thus, it appears the victims are receiving a valid call from the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, when this in fact is not the case. 

During this specific scam, the fraudulent caller states they are calling regarding a complaint which had been filed against whoever answers the telephone.  The fraudulent caller then gives the name of an “investigating officer” and instructs the recipient to call a telephone number to reach that “officer.”

In these instances the offenders are using tools to “spoof” their telephone number.  Even though these offenders are not calling from the Sheriff’s Office, they can mask their telephone number to make it appears as if the call is originating from the Sheriff’s Office. 

Residents should be aware when the Lake County Sheriff’s Office is requested to make a notification for an outside agency, a highway patrol deputy will be dispatched and will make the notification in person.  These notifications do not occur over the telephone. 

If you feel you’ve received a fraudulent telephone call, contact the Sheriff’s Office to determine the validity of the call.

Safety Tips:

  • Don't give identifying or personal information to anyone over the telephone, unless you have confirmed who you are speaking with
  • If you are unsure of a caller's identity, ask for their name and callback number, then hang-up and verify their information via the internet or telephone book
  • If a caller is asking for someone who is not currently home, simply tell the caller they cannot come to the phone (versus informing the caller you could be home alone)
For more information on phone scams please visit: 

-          Don’t give identifying or personal information to anyone over the telephone, unless you have confirmed who you are speaking with

-          If you are unsure of a caller’s identity, ask for their name and callback number, then hang-up and verify their information via the Internet or telephone book

-          If a caller is asking for someone who isn’t currently home, simply tell the caller they can’t come to the telephone (versus informing the caller you could be home alone)

For more information on scams please visit:

Sheriff Reminds Motorists Students Are Back in School - Drive with Caution

back to school3.jpgSheriff Mark Curran would like to remind motorists, parents, and children to use extra caution while commuting or walking to school. Now is the perfect opportunity to speak with children about safety when walking to the bus stop or walking to school. Safety tips include:

  • Walking with a group, a parent or a friend when possible
  • Walk on the sidewalk and only cross the street in crosswalks
  • When crossing the street look both ways to ensure no traffic is coming from any direction
  • Continuously look left and right while crossing the road to ensure no traffic is approaching while crossing
  • Don't assume someone driving a car can see you
  • Wear bright colored clothing so motorists can better identify you as a pedestrian
  • Never accept a ride from a stranger
Sheriff's Highway Patrol deputies are monitoring school safety zone areas and targeting drivers violating speed limits and cell phone restrictions as well as illegally passing stopped school buses. 

Drivers are reminded to slow down when entering and driving through school zones and refrain from cell phone usage. School zones in Illinois require drivers travel at 20 MPH or slower while schools are in session or children are present. In Illinois, schools are considered "in session" between 7:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. 

Illinois law requires drivers approaching a school bus from the rear, or from the opposite direction on a 2-lane road to stop for any school bus receiving or discharging students and to remain stopped until the school bus resumes motion or the driver is signaled to proceed by the school bus driver.

Additionally, drivers should be extra watchful this time of year and yield for children (or any pedestrian) crossing the road. Sheriff Mark Curran stated, "Remember, it's everybody's responsibility to ensure children make it to school safely."

Sheriff's Office Announces Upcoming DUI Patrols

Lake County Sheriff Mark C. Curran, Jr. announces upcoming DUI enforcement patrols including a Roadside Safety check in an effort to reduce alcohol related offenses.

The Roadside Safety check is scheduled for August 21, 2015 from 11:00pm- 3:00am at North Lewis Avenue and West Beach Road in Beach Park. “The Roadside Safety Check is an effective tool for generating voluntary compliance by the motoring public” says Sheriff Curran.

In addition, the 2015 Labor Day “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” and “Click It or Ticket” campaigns start on August 24th and go through September 7th.

The Lake County Sheriff’s Office is joining the Illinois Department of Transportation, the Illinois State Police and hundreds of law enforcement agencies across the state to save more lives by strongly enforcing intoxicated driver and seat belt laws. Additionally the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Marine Unit will be enforcing the laws of the waterways.

Sheriff Curran also reminds Lake County citizens that each year in Illinois hundreds of lives are lost in alcohol related crashes. “Do not risk losing your license, your car, your freedom or your life by driving under the influence of alcohol. If you drive impaired, law enforcement will arrest you” says Sheriff Curran.

Deputies working these details will be looking for drivers operating vehicles in an unsafe manner, driving with a suspended or revoked driver’s license, seat belt violations as well as other violations of the Illinois Vehicle Code.

The Roadside Safety Check and the additional patrols are funded through a grant from the United States Department of Transportation, National Highway Administration. The grant is administered by the Illinois Department of Transportation, Division of Traffic Safety.  

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Waukegan, IL 60085
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Sheriff Mark C. Curran Jr.
Sheriff Mark C. Curran Jr.

Undersheriff Raymond Rose
Undersheriff Raymond Rose

Lake County Sheriff's Office
25 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue
Waukegan, IL 60085

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