Rochester Police Beat December 2017 / January 2018


An officer was notified of a burn ordinance violation on December 1st. The fire was located in the 400 block of N. Walnut. The officer was unable to make contact with the homeowner so the Rochester Fire Department extinguished the fire. A note was left for the homeowner to call the department. The resident contacted the police department and was informed of the ordinance. The resident was very apologetic. They had recently moved into town and were unaware of the ordinance.

On December 10th, a police officer responded to a call on Water Wheel in which a juvenile stated he was shot in the face, back and stomach with a BB gun during a game of Airsoft with the neighborhood kids. The juvenile had red marks on his face where he was allegedly shot. The parents asked to the officer to talk to the juvenile responsible and his parents. A report was generated.

An officer initiated a stop, on December 14th, because the driver matched the description of the registered owner, who had a cancelled driver’s license. Andrew Escobar of Rochester was cited for allegedly driving without a valid driver’s license.

An officer responded to a disturbance on Lancelot. On December 19th, after finalizing divorce preceding, a couple returned to their residence, where they got into an argument. The argument allegedly got physical; however, there were no injuries to substantiate the claim and statements from the involved parties and other witnesses were inconsistent with each other. It was decided the ex-husband would leave for the night to allow things to cool down. A report was generated.

An officer responded to Natick Circle on December 20th in reference to an alleged battery. The complainant stated he was battered by a tow truck driver who was repossessing his vehicle. There were no injuries to substantiate his statement. The tow-truck driver stated the altercation never became physical. At this time, the alleged victim is not pressing charges. The incident was documented.

A resident contacted the police department on December 26th after noticing four store credit cards had been opened in her name. Two purchases were made on a Lord & Taylor credit card totaling less than $500 and a coffee table was purchased from Kohl’s and delivered to her residence. A report was generated to enable the resident to freeze her accounts.

An officer was dispatched to the Subway parking lot in reference to a hit and run. On December 29th at approximately 3:40 pm the victim parked at the Subway. There was a white van parked in the space in front of her vehicle. When the victim returned to her vehicle, she discovered it had been hit. There was white paint transfer and a small chunk missing out of her front bumper. The white van was gone. There were no witnesses or other information on the suspect vehicle at this time. Photographs were taken and a report generated.

An officer initiated a stop on a vehicle January 1st after clocking it traveling 72 mph in a 55 mph zone. During the stop, it was discovered the driver of the vehicle had a revoked driver’s license. Jaylin Borrowman of Springfield was cited for allegedly speeding and driving while license revoked. A valid driver drove the vehicle from the scene.

On January 1st an officer was dispatched to the 300 block of N. Park St. in reference to a stolen vehicle. The owner stated, at approximately 7:19 pm, he noticed headlights outside, looked out his window, and noticed his vehicle was missing. He stated he believed the individuals responsible knew his address because the vehicle had been stolen a couple weeks prior in Springfield. While on patrol, January 4th, the officer noticed the vehicle was at the residence. He spoke with the owner who advised the vehicle was returned during the afternoon. The individuals dropped off the vehicle and left at a high rate of speed. He stated his son was supposed to notify the police department but didn’t.

On January 2nd, an officer responded to the 400 block of E. Mill in reference to a residential burglary. The home owners stated between the hours of 10:30 am and 1:00 pm someone broke into the residence and took several items of value. The front door to the residence was off its lower hinge and tilted inward. They had hosted a party at the residence a couple of days prior and believe someone who attended could be responsible. The owners provided the officer with possible suspect information. A report was generated and the incident is still under investigation.

On January 6th, an officer was contacted by a resident on Arthur in reference to a domestic disturbance and criminal damage. She stated over the last couple of days she had been in an ongoing domestic disturbance with her boyfriend which was physical. After which, the boyfriend was asked to leave. He allegedly damaged parts of her residence and vehicle on his way out while verbally attacking her. He then drove past the residence several times and had sent threatening messages to her via texts. She did not wish to press charges at the time. She was advised to obtain an order of protection. Officers spoke with the boyfriend and advised him not to contact her and gave him a no trespass warning. The incident was documented.

January 12th, an officer was notified of a single vehicle accident with property damage that occurred on John St. north of Route 29 in which witnesses believed the individual was trying to leave. When officers arrived, the vehicle and driver were still at the scene. The vehicle had been traveling north bound across Route 29 from Sattley to John St. He stated he didn’t notice a vehicle traveling on Route 29 and swerved to avoid a collision with it. He jumped over a curve, went through a bush, hit the side of a utility pole and then hit a block wall flowerbed. Several lines were hanging on the utility pole. Officers stood by until Ameren could fix the utility pole. Trent Matthews of Mount Auburn was cited for allegedly failing to yield at an intersection. Jostes towed the vehicle due to it being not drivable.

On January 14th at approximately 11:52 pm, an officer was dispatched to a hit and run in the 900 block of Hillcrest. The homeowner stated her neighbor backed his vehicle into her front porch, damaged a brick pillar, and left the scene. When the officer arrived, the homeowner pointed out the vehicle. The driver was still in the vehicle and attempting to park it inside of his garage. With each attempt made, the vehicle struck the side of his garage. The driver stopped moving the vehicle when he noticed the officer’s presence. The officer noticed the driver had red glossy eyes, slow slurred speech and an odor of alcoholic beverage coming from his breath. The officer observed the driver and noticed several indications of being impaired. The officer attempted to administer each of the Standard Field Sobriety Test, but declared them complete when it became apparent it was too great of a safety hazard for the individuals well being. The subject was determined to be too impaired to be driving. Bradley Churchill of Rochester was taken to the Rochester Police Department where he submitted a breath sample. The sample was determined to have a Blood Alcohol Content of 0.176%. Churchill was cited for allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol, having a BAC greater than 0.08%, and leaving the scene of a property damage accident. Churchill was arrested and transported to Sangamon County Jail. Jostes towed the vehicle.

On January 17th, a Rochester School’s bus driver witnessed a hit and run. He stated a vehicle hit a light pole at the corner of Appalachian Trail and Osage Rd. The vehicle hit hard enough to cause significant damage to the vehicle and cause airbag deployment. The vehicle continued driving away from the scene down Osage Rd. The light pole suffered some damage as the glass covering of the light was dislodged and fell down into the street. Witnesses were able to describe the vehicle and a plate number was obtained. An officer located the vehicle in the high school parking lot and noticed damage to the vehicle consistent with the description. The driver and parents were contacted. The driver admitted to the accident. He said he lost control of his vehicle because of the snow and slid into the pole. He left the scene because he didn’t realize the light pole was damaged. After speaking to the driver about the importance of reporting accidents and the possible consequences of not reporting, the officer issued him a citation for allegedly driving too fast for conditions.

On January 19th, an officer was notified of a violation of orders of protection. The individual stated she was contacted by her ex-boyfriend via text messages. Officers made contact with Dalton Felber of Rochester and subsequently arrested him for allegedly violation of OP. Felber was transported to the Sangamon County Jail.

Officers responded to the 300 block of Parkview in reference to a disturbance on January 23rd. Two roommates were in a verbal altercation after a night of drinking. The female roommate started to throw things at the male after he came home and woke her up. Both parties agreed to leave each other alone for the evening and the female went to her room and locked the door. A report was generated.

An officer initiated a stop on a vehicle after running a plate through the in-car computer and discovering the registered owner had a suspended driver’s license. The driver of the vehicle matched the description of the registered owner. On January 23rd, Quinton A. Lancaster of Taylorville was cited for allegedly driving while license suspended. A valid driver drove from the scene.

An officer was notified of an accident that occurred on Route 29 at approximately 7:00 pm on January 29th. The victim stated he was traveling northbound toward Springfield. A vehicle approached him from the rear with his brights on and traveling at a high rate of speed. He then stated the vehicle’s lights disappeared and he felt his vehicle get hit from the rear. The victim proceeded to Hilltop and turned around back to Rochester. The suspect vehicle followed him. Both vehicles met with the officer in Camelot. The suspect vehicle’s driver, now known as Walter Harbert of Taylorville, explained he left the hospital in Taylorville and was enroute to a Springfield hospital to have a laceration on his finger treated. EMS was started to evaluate the finger due to the significant bleeding that was occurring. During the exchange, officers noticed the Harbert’s eyes were red and glossy and he exhibited slow slurred speech. Harbert was asked if he had been drinking or if he was on any medication to cause signs of impairment. He replied he was not. He gave consent for the officers to search his vehicle. Inside the vehicle was a half empty bottle of vodka and Styrofoam cup believed to contain a mixed alcoholic beverage. Due to the severity of the injury, officers were unable to conduct field sobriety test before he was transported to the hospital. At the hospital, officers asked Harbert to submit to a blood test to obtain his Blood Alcohol Content. Harbert refused to submit. After being discharged from the hospital, Harbert was arrested for allegedly driving under the influence, illegal transportation of alcohol and was issued a citation for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident. Harbert was transported to the Sangamon County Jail. Jostes towed the vehicle from the scene.

Criminal Reports 

Assault; simple – 1; Burglary Residential – 1; Criminal Damage to Property – 1; Criminal Trespass – 1; Deceptive Practices – 1; Domestic Battery – 1; Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol – 2; Harassment by Telephone – 1; Illegal Transportation of Alcohol – 1; Motor Vehicle Theft – 1; Possessing a Controlled Substance – 1; Possession of Drug Equipment – 1; Unlawful Restraining – 1; Violation of Orders of Protection – 1


Traffic Reports 

Accident Investigations – 7; Failure to Yield at an Intersection – 2; Failure to Yield from a Stop Sign – 1; Hit and Run – 3; Improper Lane Usage – 1; No Driver’s License – 5; No Registration – 1; Operating Uninsured Motor Vehicle – 10; Speeding – 29; Suspended / Revoked Drivers License – 4; Warnings Issued – 67

Calls for Service

Abandoned Vehicle – 3; Animal Related Calls – 14; Assist EMS Dept. / Other Governmental Agency – 9; Assist Fire Department – 28; Assist Other Police Agency – 46; Assist Schools – 7; Building / Business Checks – 38; Burglar Alarms – 10; Citizen Assists – 35; Civil Assists – 1; Disturbance – 5; Domestic Trouble – 3; Lost or Recovered Articles – 3; Loud Noise Complaint – 3; Motorist Assists – 16; Neighborhood Trouble – 2; Ordinance Violations – 2; Suspicious Person / Vehicle – 28; Vacation Watches – 114