COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — At a time when medical supplies are in short supply, a 38-year-old Grand Crossing woman was charged Friday with stealing breathing masks, hand sanitizer, breathing aspirators, gloves, disinfectant wipes and more from the University of Chicago Medical Center.
The Cook County State’s Attorney’s office said in court Friday that Jessica Huff, 38, of the 7500 block of S. Ellis Ave., began stealing hospital supplies Wednesday while a patient at the University of Chicago Medical Center.
During the course of her stay, Huff took a large amount of hospital supplies from several locations in the hospital, including a store room and nurses station, and hid the stolen items in her room, prosecutors alleged.
Huff also entered the rooms of four other patients and stole credit cards, social security cards, cell phones and state IDs, according to prosecutors. After stealing from a fourth victim, a woman in her 90s, the victim notified the hospital and police were called.
Prosecutors said police recovered several cases of hospital-grade facemasks, several boxes of gloves, multiple containers of hand sanitizer gel, disinfectant wipes, aspirators, blankets, gowns and the personal toiletries of nurses working in the ward from Huff’s room. Prosecutors also said they have surveillance video of Huff stealing hospital supplies from a nurses station and a storage room.
Huff was positively identified by one of the victims of her theft and arrested. On Friday, Huff was charged with one count of felony burglary and three misdemeanor theft charges.
Prosecutors said Huff is a 6-time convicted felon and is currently out bond for three felony cases in three different counties. She is on bond in DuPage County for felony burglary; for felony retail theft in Grundy County; and for “bad checks” in downstate Williamson County, prosecutors said.
Police told the court that Huff is currently at St. Bernard Hospital where she was admitted today. She now is under police guard, prosecutors said.
Cook County Circuity Judge Susana Ortiz set bond for Huff at $10,000 on Friday and scheduled her next court date for March 27.