A man threatened his mother with a machete and later held her hostage in a west suburban police station parking lot because she refused to buy him $4,000 worth of basketball cards and a costume mask on eBay, according to police.
“This is one of the most bizarre domestic situations I have ever seen in my 30 years at the Riverside Police Department,” Chief Thomas Weitzel said. The machete-wielding son went so far as to slice up bedroom sheets in front of this mother to make the point that he would harm her, he added.
The incident started about 7:30 p.m. Saturday at a Riverside home when 19-year-old Aaron M. Perez asked his mother to use her eBay account, according to a Riverside police statement.
He wanted to buy basketball cards and a costume mask from a popular movie that was being bid at $4,000, police said. She refused because she didn’t have the money.
That’s when Perez said, “Things are gonna go my way,” and robbed her of $130 in cash while armed with a machete, police claim.
He then held her hostage in her bedroom, forcing her to sign in to her eBay account and give him her phone so he could buy the items, authorities allege. At some point, he sliced up the bed linens to convince his mother he would harm her if she didn’t obey, police claim.
The mother was ultimately able to run to a car parked in the driveway, police said. The son followed, but she persuaded him to drop the machete and come with her to a relative’s home.
Instead, she drove to the nearby police station in North Riverside. She made multiple 911 calls on the way, and at one point told dispatchers she was being held hostage in a vehicle in the police station parking lot.
North Riverside officers arrested Perez without incident, and he later gave a full statement after he was turned over to Riverside police, the statement said.
“The mother, who was in fear of her life the entire time this incident took place, acted as calm as she could and I credit her with her actions that led to the arrest of her son,” Weitzel said in the statement.
Police later recovered the shredded sheets, machete and stolen cash and phone, the statement said.
Perez, of the 200 block of Des Plaines Avenue in Riverside, is charged with felony counts of kidnapping, armed robbery, unlawful restraint and intimidation, as well as misdemeanor counts of aggravated assault with a weapon and unlawful use of a weapon, police said.
He was ordered held on a $50,000 bond Monday, police said.
“To think that this entire incident took place over the purchase of a movie mask on eBay and other eBay purchases that the son wanted to make is simply astonishing,” Weitzel said.