PORT BARRINGTON – An 18-year-old Round Lake Beach man and a 16-year-old North Chicago boy were caught stealing two cars after they crashed one into a Port Barrington pond and then used a stolen credit card to buy dry clothes from a Crystal Lake Walmart, police said.
Lake County Sheriff’s deputies responded about 2 a.m. Sept. 7 to a residence in the 1200 block of Noble Drive in Port Barrington for a report of a vehicle in a pond, according to a news release from the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. When deputies arrived, they found a 2015 Chevrolet Equinox in a pond and determined that it was stolen from the 300 block of Garrison Circle, Port Barrington.
Just before 5 a.m. the same day, Crystal Lake police responded to Walmart, 1205 S. Route 31, for a report of two suspicious people.
Bradley J. Tieman, 18, of the 1400 block of East End Avenue in Round Lake Beach, and the 16-year-old boy had entered the Walmart in wet clothing, police said. They then used a stolen credit card to buy new clothes. They used the store’s restroom to change clothes.
Further investigation revealed that Tieman and the boy drove a Jeep Wrangler stolen from the 21900 block of West Washington Street near Gurnee to the Walmart. Crystal Lake police arrested the man and the boy, and Lake County Sheriff’s deputies responded to the scene.
Lake County Sheriff’s detectives later learned that the man and boy were responsible for stealing the Chevrolet Equinox and driving it into the pond, as well as stealing the Jeep.
It’s not clear why the two stole the vehicles, but Lake County Sheriff’s Sgt. Christopher Covelli was able to speak to car thieves in general.
“Oftentimes, people will commit auto thefts essentially for money – to somehow profit off the stolen car or proceeds in the car,” Covelli said.
In this case, a purse was left in one of the cars. Tieman and the 16-year-old used a credit card from the purse to buy new clothes and were entering the Walmart to buy electronics when they were apprehended, Covelli said.
The keys to the Chevrolet and Jeep were left inside both vehicles, according to the release.
“[Lake County] Sheriff [Mark] Curran reminds the community to remove valuables from your vehicles, lock your doors and take your keys with you,” the release stated.
Tieman faces multiple charges in McHenry County, including possession of a stolen vehicle and identity theft. On Friday, Lake County also got an arrest warrant listing $100,000 bond.
Tieman remains in McHenry County jail on the charges. If convicted of the most serious charge, he faces three to seven years in prison.
Tieman does not have a previous criminal record, according to the Lake and McHenry counties sheriff’s offices’ online databases.
The 16-year-old boy will be petitioned to the Lake County Juvenile Justice System for charges including burglary and unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle.