Tag: Officer Allen

Man Dies After Crashing Into Five Cars in Maywood on Sept. 6

Thursday, September 7, 2017 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews || UPDATED: 4:49 p.m.

One man is dead after a multi-car collision that happened in Maywood on Sept. 6, according to police.

The incident happened at the corner of 15th Ave. and St. Charles Rd., at around 5:09 p.m., according to Maywood Police Officer Pirsia Allen, who said he was on the scene of the crash when it happened.

Continue reading “Man Dies After Crashing Into Five Cars in Maywood on Sept. 6”

‘Churches Can Create Jobs For Youths,’ Say Local Pastors Planning Employment Program


PTMAN photo.jpg

Left to Right: Rev. James Hicks, Rev. Stephen Johns, Bishop Reginald Saffo, Rev. Albert Johnson and Rev. Bill Teague, all members of PTMAN’s cabinet, pose for a photo on March 22. Below: Cabinet members, including Rev. Pirsia Allen (far left) pose outside of Saffo’s Maywood church. | Submitted

PTMANTuesday, March 22, 2016 || By Michael Romain 

It’s a complaint that Bishop Reginald Saffo, pastor of the United Faith Missionary Baptist Church, 40 S. 19th Ave., in Maywood, hears often. Churches don’t do enough, particularly when it comes to employing young people in their own communities.

“Sometimes people say we’re not doing anything,” Saffo said during a recent interview. “We’re doing things. They may not be in the limelight, but we’re doing work.”

But the prominent local pastor, who recently replaced Bishop Claude Porter as the chairman of the Proviso Township Ministerial Alliance Network (PTMAN), modulated that observation by conceding that local churches could be doing more — which is why he said he’s been thinking long and hard these days about putting young people back to work.

“We can’t just sit by and watch these kids walk up and down the street, because there’s no funding coming from Springfield,” Saffo said. “We’re the only ones with the moral agency to challenge people to do something about this.”

Although the jobs program he envisions is only in the preliminary planning phase — during a March 21 interview, Saffo said he and his PTMAN cabinet was set to meet and discuss specifics later that day — the pastor gave a rough outline of what the program would look like.

He said each would voluntarily consent to either raise funds in order to employ local youths, or employ local youths directly in their respective facilities or on projects they’re leading.

“Churches could set aside a particular Sunday to take up an offering for jobs for our youth or a church could take already existing funds and we can pool the money together,” said Saffo, who vouchsafed for PTMAN’s financial integrity. He said an outside staffing agency could screen and interview applicants.

“We may not hire 100 kids, but if we can take 20 off the streets, that’s a start,” he said. “I think there is enough capacity within each church for them to hire a few kids off the streets. We have to be more attentive to the cries of the community. We can’t wait for a government handout.”

The nascent jobs program is consistent with PTMAN’s commitment “to leveraging our influence to bring about rectification to the systemic issues that impedes [sic] the purpose and progress of our community,” according to its organizational literature.

The organization also holds a monthly community informational meeting — an event of longstanding — each second Saturday of the month; hosts candidate forums during election cycles; and maintains a series of educational outreach programs, such as the truancy program Every Student, Every Day and Project Back Pack.

According to Rev. Pirsia Allen, who is also a Maywood Police officer and PTMAN’s safety coordinator, Project Back Pack organizes meal drop-offs to around 20 needy students at Proviso West High School and is looking to expand into Proviso East High School in the months ahead.

The truancy program utilizes volunteers to spread awareness about the importance of school attendance in the community and in participating churches.

Saffo took over the helm of the organization since Porter, its longtime head, stepped aside last year. Porter is now PTMAN’s chairman emeritus.

“Bishop Porter felt it was time to bring in new leadership,” said Saffo, who served as PTMAN’s executive director prior to stepping in as its chairman. “He’s committed to the growth of our organization and he’s watched me over the years.”

Since his promotion, Saffo has reconstituted the organization’s leadership infrastructure, implementing an 11-person cabinet that includes a safety coordinator, a membership coordinator and an outreach coordinator, among other roles.

According to new executive director Rev. Bill Teague, who pastors Hope Tabernacle Community Church in Forest Park, PTMAN has around 16 active members and 28 non-active members — numbers the newly reconstituted leadership team is looking to increase.

“PTMAN is not just a Maywood organization,” said Rev. Albert Johnson, the organization’s membership coordinator. “We want to challenge that false notion.”

Johnson said that, in recent months, the organization has started holding its monthly community informational meetings at churches outside of Maywood. While under Porter, the meetings were almost always at Proviso Baptist Church, 1116 S. 5th Ave., where the bishop pastors; now, the meetings rotate. Last month, the meeting was held in Bellwood. The April 9 meeting will be held at First Baptist Church in Melrose Park.

“That’s a real issue we’ve recognized,” said Saffo, referencing the perception that PTMAN is limited to Maywood. “We’re trying to break that myth by showing we’re willing to come to them.” VFP

PTMAN’s next community informational meeting will take place at First Baptist Church of Melrose Park, 2114 N. Main St., Melrose Park. The meetings are open to the public. Breakfast begins at 8:30 AM and the meeting starts at 9 AM. Donations are recommended in exchange for the meal.


God's Heritage

Maywood Police On Alert For ‘Red Hoodie’ Robber

Monday, December 7, 2015 || By Nicholas Samuel

Maywood police are on the hunt for a man who robbed a west suburban woman Dec. 1 at Lake Street and 4th Avenue.

The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, had just dropped her daughter off for tumbling practice at Maywood Fine Arts, 25 North Fifth Ave., at 6:30 p.m., fifteen minutes before the robbery took place.

She then decided to walk back to her car, parked on 4th Avenue, to get a few magazines. As she walked back to Maywood Fine Arts, a slim African-American man believed to be in his early 20’s assaulted her.

“He walked by and said ‘hello,’ and I said ‘hello’ back. Next thing I know, I was being pushed forward and I fell to the ground,” said the victim, who suffered scrapes all over her right leg.

“He said, ‘give me your money, you’re not moving fast enough.’ I’m opening the wallet and giving him the cash and said ‘that’s all I have.’”

The man, who wore a red hoodie, took her wallet, containing $31 in cash, two credit cards, a debit card and her license. He then ran southbound down 4th Avenue.

“It was surreal; I was in shock. I feel anxious, very stressed and have a high anxiety,” she said. “I couldn’t see his face. His hoodie was pulled really tight over his face.”

After the assault, the victim stumbled to a nearby barbershop, Marlowe’s Barber and Beauty Salon, 400 Lake St.

The victim said she banged on the door and was screaming that she had been mugged, but a man inside just stood there and wouldn’t open the door.

“I told the police that he didn’t help me,” she said.

Owners of Marlowe’s Barber and Beauty Salon could not be reached for comment.

A witness who saw her banging on the door of the barbershop and screaming ran across the street to help.

“He said, ‘I heard you yelling.’ Then he called 911 right away,” she said.

The ambulance and police were on the scene shortly after and the victim was transported to Westlake Hospital in Melrose Park.

The victim said she thinks the robber might have been armed.

“I saw something pointing from under his hoodie,” she said.

Pirsa Allen, community resource officer for the Maywood Police Department, said the case is still under investigation. He added there have been several robbery incidents on Lake Street recently because of the holiday seasons.

“Police are doing more progressive patrolling on the north end of Maywood in the business areas,” Allen said.

The victim, who has been taking her daughter to Maywood Fine Arts for six years, said she has always felt comfortable going there and that it’s a great place for the community.

But the robbery incident makes her terrified, and she’s thankful her daughter wasn’t with her when she was mugged.

“Just thinking about it makes me sick to my stomach,” she said.

Allen said the Maywood Police Department asks for the citizens of Maywood to be aware of their surroundings during the holiday seasons.

“Be aware of putting a lot of cash in your purses and look out for pickpocketers,” he said.

“If you’re going to your car, have your keys out, don’t leave a lot of Christmas packages inside the vehicle so nobody will try to break into your car and travel in pairs.” VFP

In Maywood Last Weekend, The Festive Mixes With The Solemn

Pumpkin Patch Parade

Last Saturday’s Pumpkin Patch Parade route along 5th Avenue. Below, Maywood police officer Pirsia Allen, also an ordained minister, prays during Mayor Perkins’ prayer walk. Bottom left, Maywood Police Chief Valdimir Talley takes a picture with Pastor Carl Mabins and Ofc. Allen during the pastor’s weekend events. Bottom right, members of the Second Baptist Church during its fundraiser last Saturday. Photos courtesy Chief Talley, Facebook. 

Prayer WalkFriday, October 16, 2015 || By COMMUNITY EDITOR 

Last weekend, as several hundred people from all over the Chicago area convened at the corner of 5th Avenue and Lake Street for the annual Pumpkin Patch Parade hosted by Maywood Fine Arts, a group of community leaders, elected officials, residents and village employees bowed solemnly in prayer.

They were gathered at the corner of 5th Avenue and St. Charles Rd. for a prayer walk convened by Mayor Edwenna Perkins.

The event, which was scheduled for two hours and coincided with Maywood Fine Arts’ Annual Pumpkin Patch Parade, was a collective call for peace and reconciliation — in the streets and in the board room.

Several blocks away, congregants of the Second Baptist Church converged on the church’s parking lot on the 400 block of South 13th Avenue. Members of the church volunteered to barbecue and bake items for a fundraiser, the proceeds of which would go toward the church’s general fund.

Less than five blocks away, at the corner of 17th Avenue and Madison, Carl Mabins, pastor of God’s Congregation Worship Center in Lombard and a Maywood native, pitched a tent and passed out free lunches and book bags. The congregation also partnered with the Village of Maywood for an Outdoor Praise Fest.

In all, it was a weekend of fun and spirituality in the village. VFP

carl mabins Second Baptist

Fly-Dumping Focus of Maywood Police Officer’s Village Pride Cleanup Efforts


Officer Allen loading tires that were illegally dumped in the back of an abandoned home on the corner of 9th Avenue and Washington Boulevard. Below, more tires stacked up in the home’s backyard. Photo by Michael Romain.

imageSunday, May 3, 2015 || By Michael Romain 

Fly-dumping is a perrennial concern among Maywood residents and village officials. It was the focus of Maywood Police community relations officer Pirsia Allen’s Village Pride-Village Wide cleanup efforts. The event was held last month as a way to concentrate the energies of the entire village — individuals, businesses, organizations and government agencies — to sprucing the town up.

Allen, along with Sgt. Corey Cooper, has been tasked with identifying dumpers and dump sites, making charges and/or arrests and coordinating with the public works department to clear dumping sites.

During last month’s cleanup, Allen identified an abandoned home on the corner of 9th Avenue and Washington Boulevard as the site of several dozen car tires that were sloppily stacked in the alley behind the home and in a high pile in the empty home’s backyard.

As he was picking up a tire to load it on the back of a public works truck, Allen pointed out a puddle of stagnant water that had accummulated in the inside of the tire.

“That’s where mosquitos harboring all kinds of diseases accumulate,” he said. “The people who do this often come outside of Maywood, they don’t live here.”

Allen said the dumpers often wait until after public works employees get off of work in the evenings and dump the tires in the backyards of abandoned buildings. He said he and Cooper have been busy of late, identifying an average of two sites a day. Allen said that any residents who identify sites or people engaging in illegal dumping should notify the police.

But some residents claim that their concerns have fallen on deaf ears.

“I have [a dump site] in the back of my home,” said resident C. Sharp at an April 29 board meeting. She noted that she’s been complaining about the site for two years to various village staff members to no avail.

“It’s like they don’t hear me,” she said, adding that she’s observed small kids jumping off of mattresses with coils that “could be infected with something” and a population of rodents, including “skunks, racoons, oppossums,” growing near the site. “We even have a coyote,” she said.

Sharp didn’t include the police among staff members she said she notified, which indicates that it may not be entirely clear among residents whether to treat this as a public works issue or a criminal issue. In reality, it’s both. Not only does it pose clear environmental and health risks, but the activity is also considered illegal by many municipalities and jurisdictions.

According to an illegal dumping prevention guidebook [PDF: EPA Fly Dumping Guide] created by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), fly dumping, also known as “midnight dumping,” or “wildcat dumping,” is “a major problem in many communities throughout the United States.”

The activity is known by those various terms, according to the EPA guidebook, because it often involves violators dumping materials in open areas, “from vehicles along roadsides, and late at night.”

The guidebook notes that illegal dumping presents myriad health and environmental risks. Dump sites often attract rodents and scrap tire piles, in particular, have been known to harbor disease-carrying mosquitos. The sites can also be bastions for gang and drug activity and may be particularly alluring, but dangerous, attractions for young children.

“In addition, countless neighborhoods have been evacuated and property damage has been significant because of dump sites that caught fire,” the manual states.

Dumping also decreases property values and makes the neighborhood in which it occurs less attractive to potential commercial and residental developers.

Dumping is a crime at virtually all levels of government — Federal, state and local. Section 92.28 of Maywood’s Code of Ordinances regulates dumping:

“(A) The owner, occupant or lessee of any premises in the Village shall remove from his premises or otherwise dispose of all garbage, ashes, rubbish and refuse and shall keep the premises free and clear of any accumulation of any such refuse.

(B) Pending disposal of garbage from any premises, the garbage shall be deposited in watertight containers with close fitting covers. Pending disposal from any premises, cans, bottles, metalware and similar inorganic household rubbish shall be deposited in rigid containers. All garbage and refuse shall be so stored as not to invite insects or rodents or be unsightly or a nuisance.

(C) No person shall deposit any garbage , rubbish or refuse on any street or public place or on any public or private property not his own except at any dump site which may be authorized by the Board of Trustees.

(D) No person shall bury any garbage within the Village.”

Maywood police are asking that any resident with knowledge of illegal dumping activity that could possibly lead to identifying and punishing perpetrators to call its investigations unit at (708) 450-4441. VFP

Below: A fly-dumping site located at 7th Avenue and Main Street. 


The Weekend in Review: Village’s Easter Egg Hunts a Success

imageRev. Billy Fowlkes, Maywood Police Chief Valdimir Talley and Jason Gipson of Athletic Konnection during an Easter Egg hunt last Saturday in Burton Park. Photo courtesy of Chief Talley. 

Monday, April 6, 2015 || By COMMUNITY EDITOR

Easter 2015 in Maywood was marked by fun festivities around the village. Two easter egg hunts were going on simultaneously at one point last Saturday, April 4, the day before Easter. One was sponsored by Athletic Konnection, the nonprofit sport development organization. The other was sponsored by the Maywood Police Department.

“It was a good day,” said Maywood’s community policing officer Pirsia Allen. “We had about 25 to 30 kids ranging from two to eight years old out there.”

The MPD’s egg hunt took place near Veteran’s Memorial Park on Fred Hampton Way, right in back of the police station.

“The kids were really excited,” said Allen. “We gave away stuffed animals as prizes. We even had games for the parents.”

Allen said that the department wanted to revive an event that they had hosted in the past, but that had not been put on in recent years.

“We really wanted to do something for the kids this year, so that’s why we decided to do this,” said Allen, who helped coordinate the event along with officers Daniels and Granberry. VFP

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ABC 7: “He had a big heart,” says neighbor of Slain Businessman Bill Stamps


Saturday, March 28, 2015 || Originally Published: Friday, March 27, 2015 || ABC 7 News

MAYWOOD, Ill. (WLS) — Suburban businessman Bill Stamps was shot and killed Thursday night as he sat in his car outside of his Maywood home, police said.

“I don’t know how I’m going to go on without him. He was my life,” said Selena Stamps, victim’s widow.

Moments after pulling into his driveway late Thursday night, police say someone opened fire at the car and Stamps before he was able to get out.

“I got the call when I was in Texas and I took the first flight back out to find out my husband got gunned down when he pulled in his driveway,” Selena Stamps said.

Stamps owned a small car lot, Right Way Auto Sales, where he sold used vehicles. Neighbors said he spent long hours there and was always friendly.

Stamps’ neighbor Vergie Flagg says he called her “mother” and always had a smile for her.

“I loved Billy. Now, he gone,” Vergie Flagg said.

“He was the greatest. He had a big heart, very good guy. He’s going to be missed over here,” said Renee Flagg, another neighbor.

Investigators say they have no motive for the shooting.

“They discovered a tan vehicle where the victim was inside, which had been shot multiple times,” said Pirsea Allen, Maywood Police Dept.

His family says he had no enemies they know of. They say he spent most of his time at work providing for his family.

“It hurts so bad, but I got to try to be so strong, because I’ve got to get justice for him,” Selena Stamps said.

The shooting is under investigation and no one is in custody. Police are currently searching for witnesses.

Anyone with information regarding the shooting should contact the Maywood Police Investigation Unit at (708) 450-4471. VFP

For video: http://abc7chicago.com/video/embed/?pid=576743

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