JEFFERSON PARK — A woman who allegedly threatened a Jefferson Park family over their criticism of a Northwest Side alderman before mowing down their garden with her car was arrested Thursday, police said.
Maureen McGlade, 49, has been charged with two misdemeanors for criminal damage to property and failure to notify damage to an unattended vehicle. She also was cited for not having a valid registration, police said.
Pete Czosnyka, who thinks his home was targeted because of his vocal criticism of Ald. Jim Gardiner (45th), said he identified McGlade from multiple tips and license plate information. Czosnyka said he gave that information to police, who looked up the driver’s plates within an hour of the incident and told him “she lives close” but did not provide a name, he said.
The address police provided for McGlade is about three minutes from the Czosnykas home.
Still, it took five days for police to arrest McGlade, which angered Czosnyka and neighbors who called for a quick arrest and better police accountability.
Block Club first reported on the attack Monday.
It started 7 p.m. Friday: A woman in a gold Ford Explorer SUV drove by the Czosnykas’ house near Miltimore and Menard Avenues and cursed at Noreen Czosnyka, who was outside tending to her garden.
According to Pete Czosnyka, who runs neighborhood Facebook page NWS Examiner, the woman told Noreen Czosnyka to tell her husband to “stop following the alderman.”
About nine hours later, at 3:15 a.m. Saturday, the Czosnykas’ dog began barking and the family heard loud music and screeching, Pete Czosnyka said. They went outside and saw a woman in the same vehicle driving over their garden and into their yard multiple times while screaming.
The couple identified the driver as McGlade, who is a vocal supporter of Gardiner and has disagreed with Pete Czosnyka’s political views on Facebook.
Gardiner has not responded to repeated requests for comment about the incident.
Reached by phone earlier this week, McGlade previously said she is the victim in the situation and Pete Czosnyka targeted people who disagree with him politically.
“I feel like I’m being victimized here,” McGlade said. “I think you just need to call off your dogs right now because I’m really scared of this man. I’m terrified of him. … I’m terrified to leave my house.”
Czosnyka said McGlade’s story holds no water and he is finalizing an order of protection against her.
Subscribe to Block Club Chicago. Every dime we make funds reporting from Chicago’s neighborhoods.
Listen to “It’s All Good: A Block Club Chicago Podcast” here: