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Computer gear allegedly taken from Walgreens

Richard Pickard 46 Bartlett charged with theft. | Special Sun-Times Media

Richard Pickard, 46, of Bartlett charged with theft. | Special to Sun-Times Media

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Updated: April 22, 2013 2:48AM

A Bartlett man wants a Lake County judge to free up his bank accounts, return two laptops and an iPhone.

Richard Pickard, 46, is accused of stealing computer equipment from Walgreens, according to Lincolnshire Police Detective John-Erik Anderson. Walgreens has an IT operation located at 2 Overlook Point, Lincolnshire. He was arrested Valentine’s Day.

Phone operations at 75 Walgreens stores in the Chicago area stopped working and it was discovered computer equipment controlling the phones was missing, Anderson said. Walgreens’ team of investigators determined Pickard was the only one with access to the computer equipment before it went missing.

Lincolnshire police searched Pickard’s residence and found allegedly stolen computer hardware and a large amount of cash, according to Anderson.

Pickard was charged with aggravated computer tampering, computer fraud and felony theft.

Pickard was in court Wednesday before Judge Raymond Collins for bond review. That was when his attorney Mike Salvi asked Collins to unfreeze Pickard’s bank accounts, return his electronics and $2,400 cash.

Salvi said it’s not a crime to have a lot of cash. He also said his client has “several” bank accounts. Only one account is in question for possible criminal activity, yet all of Pickard’s accounts are frozen, Salvi said.

“The police are good folks acting in good faith. We think they went overboard in seizing this property,” Salvi said.

Assistant State’s Attorney Ken Lorenz objected to the request because he had not seen it in writing before Wednesday.

Collins set the matter for hearing March 6.

Salvi did not pursue the bond review request. He called it “moot” because Pickard posted 10 percent of his $100,000 bond Feb. 15. Jail records show that was the same day Pickard was booked into jail.

Pickard has not been indicted before a grand jury on the charges.

He has been married for a long time and has children, Salvi said.

“When the time comes, we are going to plead not guilty. We think police and the state have misinterpreted a lot of evidence in this case. (Pickard) has no criminal background. He’s never been arrested, not even for jaywalking,” Salvi said.

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