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updated: 7/28/2013 5:48 PM

Police: Carpentersville man threw bleach on taxi driver to avoid fare

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  • Oliver Dickens

    Oliver Dickens


An 18-year-old Carpentersville man faces aggravated battery charges alleging he threw a can of bleach in a cabdriver's face instead of paying his fare Thursday night, according to police.

Oliver D. Dickens, 18, of the 1200 block of Silverstone Drive, is being held in the Cook County jail in lieu of $125,000 bond, records show.

He called for a ride from Carpentersville to Chicago Thursday night from A#1 Cab Dispatch, a company that primarily serves 60 suburbs outside of Chicago, a company official said Sunday.

Frank Hjelm, fleet manager for A#1, said drivers generally don't take people into the city on such long distance trips. If they do, they are supposed to get the fare up front to avoid getting stiffed. But the driver in this case, a 34-year-old man, took Dickens to the 7300 block of South Euclid Avenue on Chicago's South Side on the promise of payment from Dickens' aunt.

Hjelm said Dickens had been driven by an A#1 cab to Chicago once before and his aunt did come through, so the driver Thursday trusted the young man's word.

"This was the second time we took him to Chicago," Hjelm said.

As a precaution, though, Hjelm said the driver got Dickens' ID as collateral during the trip.

When the cab arrived in Chicago at about 9:30 p.m. Thursday, Dickens did not get out to retrieve money from his aunt. Instead, according to Hjelm, he took a pop can full of bleach he'd been holding during the ride, threw it on the driver and fled -- without his ID.

Dickens appeared in bond court Saturday, according to Chicago police. Besides the felony aggravated battery offense, Dickens was charged with misdemeanor criminal damage to property and theft of services.

His next court date is set for Aug. 2 in Chicago.

Hjelm said the driver will be recuperating for the next couple of weeks. He needed medical attention for bleach burns to his face and as of Sunday, one eye was still closed shut from his wounds.

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