LOWELL — A helicopter and police search was launched after a man in tight bicycle shorts wearing latex gloves blurted an expletive and ran into a cornfield while being questioned by an officer.
At 12:15 p.m. Saturday police responded to a trespassing report in the area of 205th Avenue and Monon Road in Lowell, according to a Lake County Sheriff's Department police report.
The officer was told a man was seen on a stopped CSX train in the area. When the officer arrived he saw a man in tight bicycle shorts, a red tank top, gray shoes and wearing black latex gloves walking south on Monon Road. His hair appeared to be covered in what appeared to be oil or grease, police said.
When the officer pulled over and asked the man to stop he turned with his hands behind his back, saying, “What? I am doing nothing wrong,” glancing at the cornfield to the east.
The officer told the man he wanted to speak with him and he responded again, “What? I am doing nothing wrong,” again looking at the cornfield.
The officer then asked the man to show him his hands and the man refused, police said. The officer again told the man he just wanted to speak with him.
The man then turned, looked at the cornfield again and stated, “(Expletive) this,” and proceeded to run eastbound into the cornfield, police said.
The officer chased the man about 20 yards into the cornfield but lost sight of him among the stalks. He then turned back and climbed on top of a rail car and saw the man still running east in the corn. The man ducked down out of sight until being spotted again four minutes later 20 yards away from where he was before.
Other officers arrived on scene with a K-9 tracker and set up a perimeter around the field. After a police dog couldn't locate the man, the Lake County Aviation Unit Eagle 1 was contacted and the Eagle 1 helicopter came to the scene but did not spot the man, the police report said.
Because of the thick vegetation and creeks around the cornfield, police ended the search.
CSX police arrived and told investigating officers they do occasionally encounter homeless people who ride the train cross-country.