DNA ties Palatine man to 2022 burglaries in Des Plaines

Walter Reed
Courtesy of Des Plaines police

A Palatine man is facing charges after DNA evidence tied him to a pair of home burglaries in Des Plaines, police said.

In both cases, intruders stole valuables after falsely alerting residents to fires, police said.

Walter Reed, 37, of the 400 block of North Lakeshore Drive, is charged with felony counts of residential burglary and home invasion.

The break-ins occurred in December 2022, Des Plaines police said in a news release.

The first was Dec. 13 at a house on the 1500 block of Kingston Court. An 89-year-old woman said she heard a loud noise and discovered two men in her home, according to police. As one man told the woman she had to leave because of a fire, the other went upstairs and stole jewelry and money, police said.

The thieves fled when the woman called 911. They were in a large, dark-colored SUV, police said.

Then, on Dec. 18, a 92-year-old man living on the 400 block of Good Avenue was the victim a similar crime.

That time, the resident responded to a ringing doorbell and was confronted by a man who warned of a fire, police said. The stranger tried to enter the home, was blocked by the resident and then pushed the resident down, police said.

The intruder and his accomplices then went inside and took checkbooks and a revolver before leaving, police said.

DNA evidence recovered from the victims’ night stands belonged to Reed, according to police.

Reed was arrested Tuesday after police learned he’d be at the Cook County courthouse in Rolling Meadows on an unrelated matter. He appeared in court Wednesday morning for a detention hearing, the result of which wasn’t immediately available.

Citing the ongoing investigation, police didn’t release any information about other suspects.

Police are encouraging people to lock the doors to their homes, including storm and screen doors, to prevent similar crimes. Additionally, if someone knocks on your door or rings the doorbell, check who it is through a peephole or window before opening the door, police said, and have your phone handy.

If they appear suspicious, call 911, police said.

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