After pickup slams into Sauk VIllage home, driver runs off shedding clothes

SAUK VILLAGE (STMW) - A homeowner is hospitalized and a man is in custody after police arrested the driver who ran off shedding his clothes after smashing a pickup into a south suburban home late Monday.

The red GMC Sierra crashed into a home at East Sauk Trail and Jeffrey Avenue in Sauk Village about 11 p.m. Monday, according to Sauk Village police.

A witness said the truck “crashed completely into the house, knocking out two walls and breaking the gas line.”

The Sauk Village Fire Department was called because the vehicle “penetrated the west wall of the house, knocking the natural gas meter off its setting and creating a significant natural gas leak,” a statement from police said.

The driver was nowhere to be found when crews arrived, but about 11:30 p.m., police were called to the 21800 block of Peterson Avenue for a suspicious man walking down the street. Callers to 911 reported the man “was seen running westbound through a parking lot and field towards Peterson Avenue while discarding his clothing.”

When officers arrived, a homeowner told them “a scantily clothed male was sitting inside her vehicle in her driveway without permission,” according to police.

When police approached, he got out of the vehicle and admitted driving into the house on Sauk Trail, police said.

But as he was being arrested, another resident stopped and identified him as the person who had tried to break into her house by smashing out a storm door, but ran away when lights came on, police said.

Police said John Strickland of Sauk Village was charged with DUI and leaving the scene of an accident in connection with the crash, and further charges are pending.

ComEd and NICOR turned off the utilities; the vehicle was towed; and the residence boarded up, police said. The owner of the home was taken  to St. Margaret’s Hospital in Dyer, Indiana, with non-life-threatening injuries.

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