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Riverside Police Arrest North Side Con Artist In Hiding For 2 Years

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William O'Connor (Credit: Riverside Police Department)

William O’Connor (Credit: Riverside Police Department)

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UPATED 08/22/11 9:28 a.m.

RIVERSIDE, Ill. (CBS) – Police in Riverside arrested a con man over the weekend, who they say has been in hiding around the Chicago area for two years.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Dave Berner reports, William M. O’Connor, 48, was arrested around 12:10 a.m. Saturday in his apartment in the 1400 block of West Diversey Pkwy., on the southwest edge of the Lakeview neighborhood.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Dave Berner reports

The arrest came from a warrant from January 2009 incident in Riverside where he allegedly wrote a bad check for more than $1,000, according to a Riverside police release.

Since 1994, O’Connor has been arrested 32 times and convicted 14 times, mostly for fraud.

Riverside police have been trying to find O’Connor since 2009, checking several previous addresses. Since then, they say O’Connor has been writing bad checks over and over, adding to a decade of scams.

When O’Connor was arrested, police learned he had four active arrest warrants and was also wanted by the Illinois Department of Corrections for a parole violation, Lake County Sheriff’s Department for failure to appear for a deceptive practice case and Clarendon Hills police, the release said. He is also under investigation by several suburban police agencies.

“Mr. O’Connor had been defrauding Chicago area business owners for over a decade,” Riverside police Chief Tom Weitzel said. “While in custody, Mr. O’Connor bragged that he has never had to pay a penny back to any of the business owner[s] he had defrauded. My hope is that with this arrest his luck has run out.”

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.

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