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Accused Burglar Tells Cops He Was ‘Hiding’ in Garage

Oak Lawn man accused of burglary when police find power drills removed from shelf in homeowner's garage, reports say.

A man seen prowling down neighbors’ driveways was charged with felony burglary when police found him hiding in a garage, reports said.

Oak Lawn police were called to the 10300 block of South Tripp Avenue around 2:50 p.m. Sept. 16 in response to a “suspicious person.”

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According to the report, the caller said she saw a man identified as Pete Johns, 34, walking down her driveway and looking around. She thought he looked “suspicious.”

Police said she went to her side door and asked if could help him. Johns said something about a car for sale. She told him there was no car for sale and watched Johns as he walked down the driveways between her neighbors’ houses. She then called 911, reports said.

After speaking to the witness, police went looking in the neighborhood for a man wearing a baseball cap, white T-shirt and plaid shorts.

The officer said he heard the service to the garage slam shut. As police approached the garage, the large overhead door went up and Johns walked out.

Johns allegedly told police that a man was chasing him so he went into the garage to hide. The homeowner said he didn’t know Johns, who did not have his permission to be in his garage, reports said.

Police said the homeowner showed them two power drills that have been removed from a shelf and placed near a service door.

Johns was placed under arrest. As he was sitting on the driveway, police said the caller came by and positively identified him.

At the Oak Lawn police station, police said Johns signed a waiver and agreed to talk to them. He repeated his story of a man chasing him and hiding in the homeowner’s garage. Johns denied touching the power drills, reports said.

Johns allegedly told police that because he never stole anything, he could only be charged with criminal trespassing.

When the officer explained to Johns that police were contacting the Cook County prosecutor for a possibly felony charge, police said Johns ended the interview by saying, “I don’t want to talk to you anymore.”

A felony was approved for one count of burglary. Johns appeared at a bond hearing on Sept. 17.

His next court appearance is on Oct. 16 at the Bridgeview Courthouse.

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Pat F September 20, 2012 at 04:06 PM
Well, the police caught the burglar..let's see if the court system does something to keep him off the street!
tmarc75 September 20, 2012 at 06:12 PM
I hope for his sake that he doesn't end up in my garage one day.
Kathie Miller September 20, 2012 at 06:13 PM
Good luck with that, our court system sucks (sorry)
Ed McCue September 20, 2012 at 07:09 PM
agree with Pat and Kathie 100%
Rock Bobster September 20, 2012 at 07:14 PM
Something tells me that his last name wasn't originally "Johns".......scary looking guy!
mclifford September 20, 2012 at 08:01 PM
I was the caller and hope proper measures are taken....
Dave W. September 20, 2012 at 08:07 PM
What else would it be? Who changes their name to that? Not exactly flashy or impressive...was he "Williams" or "Jones" before?
Dave W. September 20, 2012 at 08:08 PM
Good for you for calling!
Rock Bobster September 20, 2012 at 09:28 PM
He looks Hispanic or Middle Eastern. He might have been forced to change it by his family because of the disgrace of being a criminal.
Tricia S September 20, 2012 at 10:26 PM
Thanks!! We have great neighbors...so happy you called and they got this guy. I hope he spends a lot of time in jail!!
Dave W. September 20, 2012 at 10:50 PM
Maybe he is Greek, or Italian...or Moroccan...or Russian, or Slovakian. Maybe he is half Irish, half Portuguese..."Pete" isn't exactly middle eastern or hispanic either, so that means he changed his whole name, all to become a mastermind (or not) burglar in the middle income town of Oak Lawn, not Barrington or Hinsdale. Sounds like you have him all figured out...especially the implication that if he is middle eastern of hispanic that makes his a 'scary looking guy'.
Jerry September 21, 2012 at 12:57 AM
Johns is a very well known Romani gypsy name and the self proclaimed "king of the gypsies" in Chicago is a Johns. They allegedly run an expansive organized crime organization.
Dave W. September 21, 2012 at 02:44 AM
So, NOT middle eastern or hispanic...glad that was cleared up...now people can just prejudge all the Romanis...
Lupe' DeAguirre September 21, 2012 at 01:59 PM
Aahhhhh.....Pete Johns. Nice guy, from a great family. Except for the heroin. And the frequent arrests. And the Medicaid fraud. And the stolen property. And the fact there are at least 3,others in his house using the name "Pete Johns". Fake IDs, stolen prescription pads. And, just so everyone knows, "Pete" and his band of Gypsies are an entire family of problems. How do I know this? Lets just say several members of the "Johns" family have been in the back of this squad car.
Kschnell September 21, 2012 at 05:46 PM
So goes the song "Gypsies Tramps and Thieves!!!!" Heartless cold blooded thieves, they prey on the elderly, steal their money and anything that is not bolted down! His bond in $100,000.00 so 10%...I'm sure that they will scrounge that up somehow with money from innocent people.
Elly September 24, 2012 at 01:16 PM
You know I walk my dog on a daily basis and I see some really weird looking people walking down the pathway (the one that goes all the way to Cicero) where are these people coming from. I just don't want to call police for the heck of it I know they must be busy. However, in the 9 years I lived in Oak Lawn I have to say this is the first year I'm actually scared of all the weirdos walking the area.
U.N. Owen December 15, 2012 at 12:17 AM
If hispanic, either it was Pacco, Jose, or Pablo

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