Category Archives: Seen on CBS 2

Boo! At The (Brookfield) Zoo Brings Out Costumes And Creatures

Chicago (CBS) — The spooktacular fun is underway at the Brookfield Zoo’s annual Boo! at the Zoo event, which has added a third weekend of events this year. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays through the end of October, guests of all ages can show off their Halloween costumes and enjoy family friendly and creepy fun activities.

Zoo curator Tim Sullivan said the event has been bringing in families for decades.

“It’s amazing because it keeps growing,” Sullivan said. “Halloween has become a very popular event, so for that need, we’re going to throw in a third weekend.”

The event’s sponsor Ferrara Candy Company donated 10,000 pounds of candy. Activities include a corn maze, a haunted hayride and a pumpkin smasher demolishing pumpkins hourly.

Pumpkins will also be given to polar bears, gorillas and other animals around the zoo to play with and eat.

For more information on Boo! at the Zoo’s hours and schedule of activities, visit the Brookfield Zoo’s website.

Chicago International Youth Peace Movement Hosts Fundraiser

Chicago (CBS) — Music and songs filled the air in River North Saturday night at a fundraiser hosted by the Chicago International Youth Peace Movement.

The Reverend Jesse Jackson was one of several special guests at the event. The group promotes peace and education through various programs and provides mentorship to area youth.

Man Caught On Camera Trying To Steal Mail In Riverside

Chicago (CBS) — A Riverside homeowner’s video doorbell caught a man going through his mailbox in the middle of the night.

Seth Normington said he got a phone alert early Friday morning about the incident. The surveillance video shows a man creeping into view and checking out his mailbox around 4:45 a.m.

“It’s definitely unnerving to see a stranger was up on your front porch,” Normington said.

The man left with nothing but managed to take a little of Normington’s peace of mind.

Police believe the man tried to make off with mail from at least two other homes in the area and want you to take a good look at his image.

The person is described as a man with glasses and facial hair and was wearing a backpack at the time of the incidents.

“I hope they find him,” Normington said. “It’s pretty sad that someone is going door to door looking for things to take.”

Riverside police are encouraging other neighbors to consider the video doorbell option and to contact them if they recognize the man from the video.

More Than 250 Buildings Open To The Public This Weekend

Chicago (CBS) — The Chicago Architecture Center is hosting Open House Chicago Saturday and Sunday. The free festival is an opportunity to check out spaces rarely open to the public.

From mansions to theaters to private clubs and hotels, you can visit more than 250 buildings across the city. No tickets are required.

Robberies Plaguing South Austin

Chicago (CBS) — There’s a rash of armed robberies taking place in South Austin, police said. Throughout the past month, seven robberies have happened where two to four men approach victims on the street with handguns demanding money and cell phones.

The most recent reported robbery was last Saturday near Congress and Laramie.

I-57 Shooting Closed Southbound Traffic Early Saturday

Chicago (CBS) — Officials are investigating a shooting, which occurred on I-57 southbound at approximately 2:54 a.m. Saturday, according to Illinois State Police.

Police responded to reports of a vehicle being struck by gunfire between Kedzie and 159th. One female and two males inside one vehicle were struck by gunfire. One additional occupant of the same vehicle was uninjured.

All lanes of I-57 southbound were closed from Kedzie to 159th street due to the investigation, police said.

Reward Offered For Missing Postal Worker

Chicago (CBS) — A reward is being offered for a pregnant postal worker who has been missing for more than a week.

Kierra Coles was last seen near 81st and Vernon in the Chatham neighborhood. Her car was found parked on the block with her cell phone and purse still inside. She is three-months pregnant with her first child.

Last night, her mother posted on Facebook asking for help finding her daughter and offering a $3500 reward.

Normal Avenue To Be Resurfaced After Residents’ Complaints

Chicago (CBS) — Pullman residents have repeatedly complained about how their stretch of Normal Avenue between 124th and 125th Streets is riddled with potholes and patch jobs.

Rolanda Harris said virtually every street around her block is fixed, but hers is bumpy, uneven and rough.

“Other streets are getting repavement done,” Harris said. “I’ve been calling the alderman’s office to see if our street is on the list.”

Cornelius Mack said this pavement has ruined two of his car’s tires so far. He said his pleas for help have gone unanswered.

“The alderman just says ‘I’m going to send somebody out there’ but they never do,” Mack said.

Anthony Williams said this problem isn’t new.

“It’s been like this for a long time … years” Williams said.

CBS 2 reached out to 34th Ward Alderman Carrie Austin for answers. She said she gets $1.3 million for capital projects like roads every year and that residents need to submit a petition.

“$1.3 million only goes so far,” Austin said. “A lot of streets are bad.”

The street Austin lives on and Harris’ street are visibly different.

“I pay my taxes,” Harris said. “I expect that my street is taken care of.”

After CBS 2’s inquiries, Alderman Austin said this block of Normal Avenue is now on the list to be resurfaced in 2019.




Chicago Car Thieves Targeting Suburbs

Chicago (CBS) — Groups of thieves are going from the city to the suburbs by the carload, targeting cars with key fobs left inside.

“We never thought this would happen,” Jake Olson said. “We feel safe out here.”

So safe that Jake and Trisha Olson left both their SUVs in their driveway Monday night with the keys inside. Then they got an early morning call from police saying Trisha’s car was found abandoned in nearby Palatine. The couple went to check their driveway and found that in fact both their cars were gone.

“We had four sleeping kids in the house at the time and the first thing that comes to our mind was the safety of our kids,” Jake said. “Is somebody still in the neighborhood? Is someone in the backyard?”

The thieves were long gone and Trisha got her Ford Expedition back from Palatine.

“I took it and had it detailed, cleaned and scrubbed inside,” Trisha said. “So I feel fine, but it’s still that creepy feeling.”

The next day more police called to say Jake’s stripped and totaled Range Rover was found abandoned in Calumet Park.

“We have car theft rings coming in from the city,” Lake County Sheriff Mark Curran said.

Curran said they have 100 suspects from multiple theft rings involved in stealing more than 130 cars in the past two years. DuPage, Will and McHenry counties are dealing with the same problem.

The thieves target nice neighborhoods, nice cars and look for easy access.

“Every one of these cars that has been stolen had a key fob in the car,” Curran said.

The Olsons won’t make that mistake again. They had their car re-keyed, got new locks and changed their garage door code, trying to feel safe and grateful it wasn’t worse.

“At the end of the day, it’s a car,” Jake Olson said. “A car can always be replaced.”

Police said in nearly all the cases, the thieves have not entered homes. They basically steal the cars to go on a joyride and then strip them for parts. In Lake County, they’ve recovered 95 percent of the stolen cars.

Microbiological Zoo At Treatment Plant Turns Wastewater Into Fertilizer

CHICAGO (CBS) — When you flush the toilet, where does it all go? Your waste could end up fertilizing Chicago area farms and parks, after being treated at the Stickney Water Reclamation Plant.

It’s one of the largest wastewater facilities in the world. The waters at the Stickney plant are essentially a microbiological zoo.

“We want to sort of dispel some of the myths behind wastewater treatment. It is not just a bunch of pumps and water flowing. So it is a science-based system,” said Toni Glymph-Martin, senior environmental microbiologist at the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago.

One of the microscopic creatures essential to treating wastewater is the tardigrade, also known as a “water bear.”

“He’ll bite a hole in its prey, and suck all the juices out of it,” Glymph-Martin said.

Built in the 1930s, it’s one of seven wastewater treatment and stormwater management facilities for the MWRDGC, providing service for more than 5 million people in Chicago and suburban Cook County.

“This really is a STEM career place to work. We have aquatic biologists, we have microbiologists, we have engineers, we have statisticians, but what people don’t realize is that these are microbiological systems, and the way that we treat it is that the waste is mixed with microorganisms, and its actually the microorganisms that’s doing the work,” Glymph-Martin said. “We feed it to the microorganisms, and they eat it, because it’s like chocolate to them.”

Once wastewater is treated at the plant, the separated and cleaned water is released into the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal. The solids become sustainable nutrient-rich alternatives to chemical fertilizers, and are used on golf courses, farms, and even at Maggie Daley Park.

“Our job is to make sure that the bugs are happy. So we monitor the microbes to make sure that the treatment system is running properly,” Glymph-Martin said. “You can tell by looking at the microbes, and which ones are dominant, how well our system is working.”

The MWRDGC will have a booth set up at the Museum of Science and Industry on Saturday for Science Works, a partnership with CBS 2 to teach people about careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).