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A 24-year-old man was reportedly charged with driving with a suspended license and obstructed windshield after police stopped the vehicle he was driving in the 10800 block of Southwest Highway.

Emmanuel Garcia, of Chicago, was arrested at 4:09 p.m. Jan. 14. He was also charged with suspended registration.

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A 46-year-old man was reportedly charged with driving while license suspended and obstructed windshield after police stopped the vehicle he was driving in the 7100 block of 111th Street.

Jose A. Bustos, of Stickney, was arrested at 7:11 a.m. Jan. 22.

Area police departments

Chicago Ridge    425-7831
Evergreen Park   422-2142
Hickory Hills      598-4900
Oak Lawn          499-7722
Palos Hills          598-2272
Worth                448-3979

Accused murderers of Park couple file motions for separate trials

By Laura Bollin

Three young men who have been charged with first-degree murder in the slayings of a Palos Park couple are now seeking separate trials.

A spokesperson for the Cook County State's Attorney's office confirmed that attorneys for John Granat, 18, of Palos Park; Christopher Wyma, 18, of Bridgeview; and Ehab Qasem, 21, of Hickory Hills; filed motions Jan. 25 that the accused murderers be tried separately. Granat, Wyma and Qasem are represented by public defenders.

A fourth defendant, Mohammad Salahat of Hickory Hills, has already requested a separate trial. Salahat is represented by attorneys Joel Brodsky and Mohammad Ramadan.

The four men allegedly planned and carried out the murders of Granat's parents, John, 42, and Maria, 44, in September 2011. The couple was found dead in the bedroom of their home, 12762 S. 81st Court in unincorporated Palos Park, at 7:12 a.m. Sept. 11. Granat was charged with two counts of murder on Sept. 13.

John Granat was bludgeoned to death, and Maria had been beaten and stabbed, according to police.

Granat and Wyma were seniors and Salahat a junior at Stagg High School in Palos Hills. Qasem is a 2011 graduate of Stagg High, was friends with the defendants, police said.

Wyma and Qasem were reportedly driven to the home by Salahat, who remained in the car, according to Brodsky. Salahat did not know what was happening inside the home, Brodsky has said.

When the youths arrived at the Granat home at about 2 a.m., Wyma and Qasem went with baseball bats upstairs into the bedroom, where Wyma beat the elder Granat and Qasem beat Maria, according to Cook County State's Attorney Peter Troy. Wyma was bludgeoning John, and Qasem was striking Maria, Troy has said. John Granat Sr. woke up during the attack and attempted to fight off Wyma off, at which point Qasem began striking Granat, Troy has said. John Granat Jr. is accused of being present and participating in the beating of his parents.

After the killings, the youths allegedly went to Wyma's home in Bridgeview to wash off the baseball bats and knife, and threw away gloves they wore during the attack. Granat was on his way home when he was stopped by Palos Heights police at 122nd Street and Harlem Avenue because the vehicle he was driving did not having an illuminated license plate. He reportedly had bleach or ammonia in the car. He then returned home, and later called police to report finding his parents beaten to death, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart has said.

The baseball bats were found near one of the suspect's homes, the knife in a forest preserve, Dart has said.

The men allegedly planned the murders over Skype, an Internet video chatting service. They knew there was about $35,000 in the home, according to Cook County Sherriff's police.

Granat, Wyma, and Qasemare scheduled to appear in court March 8. Salahat is scheduled to appearing court Feb. 25.

Evergreen Park

A 45-year-old man was charged with aggravated fleeing and eluding after he allegedly sped away and ignored 12 stop signs after police tried to stop the vehicle he was driving in the 9100 block of Western Avenue.

Michael R. Reidy, of Merrionette Park, was arrested at 8:54 p.m. Jan. 10. Police reportedly stopped the vehicle Reidy was driving for traveling 46 mph in a 20-mph zone, and when they told him he would have to be taken into custody for expired registration he allegedly refused to exit the car and sped away. Police reportedly stopped him again at 91st Street and Oakley Avenue. He was also charged with speeding, expired registration, suspended registration, improper use of registration and driving with a suspended license.

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Two men were arrested after they allegedly refused to pay a cab driver, and one of them attempted to punch the driver, after being dropped off in the 9700 block of Albany Avenue.

Jordan P. Benoit, 22, of Chicago, and Jonathan D. Rickert, 21, of Evergreen Park, were arrested at 4:06 a.m. Jan. 12. Benoit was reportedly charged with theft of services and battery, and Rickert was charged with theft of services.

The duo exited the cab and refused to pay the $26 fare, and when they returned to the cab to retrieve an item left behind Benoit attempted to punch the driver, police said. Benoit and Rickert were reportedly driving around Evergreen Park in Benoit's car and were stopped by police.

Benoit was also charged with failure to signal and driving with no insurance.

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Two women were charged with retail theft after they allegedly took cosmetics items from a store in the 2500 block of 95th Street.

Michelle M. Griffin and Korlu S. Yekeh, both 19 and of Chicago, was arrested at 9:24 p.m. Jan. 10. Griffin reportedly took $66 worth of items, and Yekeh took $49 worth of items.

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A 34-year-old man was charged with retail theft after he allegedly took three canned air canisters with a retail value of $14 from a store in the 2500 block of 95th Street.

Erik R. Vanwerven, of Oak Lawn, was arrested at 10:01 a.m. Jan. 11.

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Two Chicago women were charged with retail theft after they allegedly took clothing and cosmetics from a store in the 2500 block of 95th Street.

Donna D. Campbell, 30, and Sharlamar S. Runles, 25, were arrested at 4:25 p.m. Jan. 12. Campbell reportedly took $44 worth of cosmetics, and Runles took $71 worth of clothing.

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A 23-year-old woman was charged with retail theft after she allegedly took $45 worth of clothing from a store in the 2500 block of 95th Street.

Gabriel M. Howell, of South Holland, was arrested at 3:50 p.m. Jan. 11.

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An 18-year-old woman was charged with retail theft after she allegedly took $94 worth of clothing from a store in the 2500 block of 95th Street.

Tulisa L. Rowlett, of Chicago, was arrested at 5:34 p.m. Jan. 10.

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A 40-year-old man was charged with retail theft after he took a bottle of vodka worth $49 from a store in the 2400 block of Western Avenue.

Bruce L. Collier, of Chicago, was arrested at 1:20 p.m. Jan. 11.

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A 32-year-old man was charged with retail theft after he allegedly took two belts worth $39 from a store in the 9700 block of Western Avenue.

Steven D. Macias, of Chicago, was arrested at 12:51 p.m. Jan. 10.

Chicago Ridge

A 30-year-old woman was charged with retail theft after she allegedly took clothing with a retail value of $533 from a store at the Chicago Ridge Mall.

A nnette Wieckowski-Harper, of Alsip, was arrested at 8:30 p.m. Jan. 9.

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A 34-year-old man was reportedly charged with driving with a revoked license and failure to signal after police stopped the vehicle he was driving at the intersection of 103rd Street and Harlem Avenue.

S antiago Escalona, of Chicago, was arrested at 6:29 p.m. Jan. 8. He was also charged with no rear registration and no insurance.

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A 28-year-old woman was reportedly charged with driving with a suspended license and improper lane usage after police stopped the vehicle she was driving at the intersection of Harlem Avenue and 104th Street.

E man J. Zeidan, of Justice, was arrested at 1:07 a.m. Jan. 10.

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A 56-year-old woman was reportedly charged with driving with a suspended license and improper lane usage after police stopped the vehicle she was driving at the intersection of 106th Street and Oxford Avenue.

D eborah Alexander, of Hometown, was arrested at 1:27 a.m. Jan. 13. She was also charged with driving with no insurance.

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A 22-year-old woman was reportedly charged with driving without a valid license and expired vehicle registration after police stopped the vehicle she was driving at the intersection of 110th Street and Ridgeland Avenue.

M elissa Martinez, of Blue Island, was arrested at 6:23 p.m. Jan. 12.

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A 34-year-old man was reportedly charged with driving with a suspended license after police stopped the vehicle he was driving at the intersection of 112th Street and Ridgeland Avenue.

I sreal Millan-Mendez, of Alsip, was arrested at 7:16 p.m. Jan. 11.

Oak Lawn

A 51-year-old man was charged with theft of labor or services after he allegedly refused to pay cab fare to a driver that drove him around downtown Chicago and to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn.

James P. Burke, of Chicago, was arrested at 12:17 a.m. Jan. 16. The cab driver reportedly picked him up at 7:30 p.m. that night, and drove him to several places where he "had a few drinks," including a pizzeria near Midway Airport and places in downtown Chicago, police said. The driver and Burke reportedly agreed on a fare of $30 per hour in cash.

At the end of the night, Burke reportedly told the driver he was having chest pains, and asked to be driven to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn. Burke wanted to pay the driver with a check, but the driver refused, police said.

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A 25-year-old man was charged with battery after he allegedly kicked a security officer in the face at Advocate Christ Medical Center, 4440 W. 95th St.

Alan J. Hivick, of Oak Lawn, was arrested at 2:53 a.m. Jan. 11. Two nurses reportedly attempted to draw blood from Hivick, who was pulling away from them. The security officer came in to help hold Hivick, and Hivick reportedly kicked him in the face, causing his glasses to break.

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A 44-year-old man was reportedly charged with DUI after police stopped the vehicle he was driving in the 4700 block of Southwest Highway.

Javier Nunez, of Chicago, was arrested at 12:10 a.m. Jan. 18. He was also charged with improper lane usage and operation of an uninsured motor vehicle.

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A 33-year-old woman was charged with retail theft after she allegedly took a purse worth $34 from a store in the 4100 block of 95th Street.

Carol D. Conte, of New Lenox, was arrested at 12:30 p.m. Jan. 17.

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A 45-year-old man was reportedly charged with DUI and speeding after police stopped the vehicle he was driving in the 4000 block of 101st Street.

Carl McKnight, of Chicago, was arrested at 4:25 a.m. Jan. 17. He was reportedly driving 55 mph in a 35 mph zone. He was also charged with improper lane usage.

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A 20-year-old man was charged with possession of a controlled substance and fleeing and eluding a peace officer after police stopped the vehicle he was driving in the 5500 block of Oakdale Avenue.

Zaid N. Joudeh, of Oak Lawn, was arrested at 6:09 p.m. Jan. 16. He was reportedly driving 40 mph in a 25 mph zone in the 5500 block of 102nd Street, but did not stop when police put on their lights and sirens. He possessed one hydrocodone pill, police said. He was also charged with no seatbelt and improper registration.

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A 25-year-old man was reportedly charged with DUI and speeding after police stopped the vehicle he was driving in the 4700 block of Cicero Avenue.

Gregory K. Shipp, of Sauk Village, was arrested at 3:59 a.m. Jan. 16. He was also charged with improper lane usage and failure to signal.

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A 20-year-old man was charged with retail theft after he allegedly took 10 DVDs worth $283 from a store in the 4100 block of 95th Street.

Sean M. Ramsey Milam, of Evergreen Park, was arrested at 3:08 p.m. Jan. 12.

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 20-year-old woman was charged with retail theft after she allegedly took cosmetics worth $70 from a store in the 4100 block of 95th Street.

Jasmine H. Pinkston, of Chicago, was arrested at 8:11 p.m. Jan. 11.

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A 19-year-old man was charged with illegal possession, consumption and transportation of alcohol by a minor after police stopped the vehicle he was driving in the 4700 block of 95th Street.

Nolan R. Murnick, of Winfield, was arrested at 3 a.m. Jan. 13. He reportedly had three cans of beer, two of which were open, in his vehicle. He was also charged with operation of an uninsured motor vehicle and driving with a suspended license.

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A 26-year-old man was charged with DUI and speeding after police stopped the vehicle he was driving in the 6000 block of 95th Street.

Edgar Aguilera, of Chicago, was arrested at 1:15 a.m. Jan. 11. There was an open bottle of cognac in the vehicle, police said. He was also charged with illegal transportation of alcohol and no driver's license.

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A 28-year-old man was reportedly charged with DUI after he was involved in a two-car accident in the 10100 block of Pulaski Road.

Victor A. Davila, of Alsip, and Rosa M. Perez, 34, of Chicago, were arrested at 4:20 a.m. Jan. 11. Davila's vehicle reportedly struck Perez's vehicle. Perez was charged with no driver's license. Davila was also charged with failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

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Disorderly conduct was reported at a home in the 9800 block of Kenneth Avenue. An unknown person reportedly put shaving cream all over a truck parked on the block.

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 Burglary was reported at a business in the 4800 block of 111th Street at 8:31 a.m. Jan. 12. The glass door to the business was broken, and a cash register with $10 inside was reportedly taken.