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Bloomingdale Trail Trespassers Nabbed Late Tuesday to Face Charges

By Alisa Hauser | March 11, 2015 11:34am
 Lights installed along the trail.
Lights installed along the trail.
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BUCKTOWN —  Three people — two men and a woman — were arrested on the under-construction Bloomingdale Trail late Tuesday and will each face charges of criminal trespassing to land, police said.

Eunice Moreno, 24, of the 4400 block of North Bernard Avenue; Luis Santana, 28, of the 2700 block of West Division Street; and Alfredo Vega, 27, of the 1600 block of North Harding Ave. were arrested in the 1800 block of North Milwaukee Avenue in Bucktown around 11:05 p.m. Tuesday.

Officer Jose Estrada, a Chicago Police spokesman, said each will face one count of criminal trespassing land, a misdemeanor that will require a court appearance before a judge and is punishable with jail time, a fine, or a dismissal.

Shakespeare District police were alerted to the trespassers by a resident who lives along the trail —  a 2.7-mile elevated path that runs through four Chicago neighborhoods and is set to open in June —  and called 911 to report that three individuals were "possibly spray painting," Estrada said.

Estrada confirmed that no cans of spray painting materials were found on the trio, two of whom have no prior criminal histories. Vega has prior felonies for theft and a traffic incident, Estrada said.

Moreno, Santana and Vega were briefly in police custody before being released on bond.  There are scheduled to appear at Cook County Court- Branch 23, 5500 W. Grand Ave., at 2:30 p.m. April 27.

"Since it is currently under construction, the trail is closed to the public. It is just like any other construction site in the city; it is not safe and you need to have an intent or purpose to be on it," Estrada said.

Estrada added, "If residents see anything suspicious people or activity on the trail, they should call 911 to report it."

Early Wednesday, Shakespeare District Police informed their social media followers of the arrest on their Twitter feed, ChicagoCAPS14.

"Last night 3 adults were arrested for trespassing on the @. Remember-it is a construction site & not open to the public yet," the District tweeted.

Local police have been on the trail, a defunct former railroad line, looking for trespassers during construction while the trail is off limits. They have been issuing tickets for criminal trespassers since last October.

Once open in June, the park hours will be 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily. The 606's ground-level parks and six other access points to the trail will be monitored by local police, organizers previously said.

For more information, visit The606.org or follow the park's progress on Facebook or Twitter, @The606Chicago.



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