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Local News

Judge to consider blocking evidence in Joliet case of 'vigilante action'

Lavon K. Young
Lavon K. Young

A Will County judge will consider whether to suppress evidence in a case where three men allegedly tortured a man for information that led to the arrest of a suspected armed robber.

Jeffrey Tomczak, attorney for Lavon K. Young 22, the alleged armed robber, told Will County judge Dave Carlson on Tuesday that he was dealing with a “unique case” of “vigilante action” by three men who allegedly tortured a man for information that led to Young’s arrest.

Young was allegedly one of three armed robbers who raided the home of Andres Alonso, 28, on July 10, 2017, in the 800 block of North Hickory Street in Joliet, according to court records.

The robbers allegedly stole firearms, including an AK-47, jewelry and cash.

Alonso, along with his cohorts, Sergio Flores, 31, and Marlon Crosby, 26, then allegedly abducted Andres Ochoa, 22, to obtain information on the robbers, which then led them Young, who was identified in a six person line-up by either Alonso or his girlfriend, according to court records.

Alonso, Flores and Crosby have been charged with kidnapping and beating Ochoa, who denied he was one of the robbers.

Tomczak argued that the three men obtained information from Ochoa through torture, as they lured Ochoa to their car under the guise of him owing Alonso a “drug debt.” Ochoa was then allegedly beaten and bound with duct tape.

Tomczak argued that once Ochoa was in the car, the men threatened to stab him with his keys, starve and dehydrate him, and drill holes in his arms.

When Joliet police executed a search warrant at Young’s home, Tomczak claimed it was based on information derived from the men’s alleged torture of Ochoa.

“That evidence is tainted, that evidence is coerced and that evidence is unreliable,” Tomczak said.

A Joliet police detective said in grand jury testimony that none of the victims’ belongings were found at the home that was searched.

Will County Assistant State’s Attorney Tom Slazyk said Young was identified as one of the robbers seen on Alonso’s home video surveillance of the incident. He said one of the suspects in the video had tattoos that matched Young’s. Ochoa had also identified Young as one of the robbers, he said.

Joliet police Sgt. Darrell Gavin said in an email that Young has been the only suspect arrested in connection with the robbery. He said a detective formed his own case against Young.

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