Naperville police recover another firearm from car parked at TopGolf, the fourth in less than two months

Tess Kenny/Chicago Tribune/TNS

For the fourth time in less than two months, police have made a gun-related arrest at Naperville’s TopGolf facility.

Cornelius Clark Jr., 35, of Chicago, was arrested Tuesday after a Naperville police officer allegedly observed a firearm in his car while it was parked in TopGolf’s 3221 Odyssey Court lot, according to Naperville police Cmdr. Michaus Williams.

The firearm was in “plain view” inside Clark’s vehicle, Williams wrote in an email Thursday.

Similar arrests, following a similar chain of events — in which an officer walking a foot patrol around TopGolf reportedly spotted a gun through a parked car’s window, resulting in charges and weapon recovery — have been made on three separate occasions since Sept. 11.

None of the busts, including Clark’s arrest, have involved Naperville residents.

Clark was taken into custody without incident and charged with two felony counts of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. His Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card was also revoked at the time of the incident, Williams said.

Illinois residents must possess a valid FOID card to legally purchase, or own, any firearm. When cards are revoked, holders are required by state law to surrender their IDs to the local law enforcement agency where they reside within 48 hours of receiving notice that they’re noncompliant. Earlier this month, Naperville Police reported that more than 700 revoked FOID cards were tied to the city, 300 of which required further review.

After the third gun-related arrest at TopGolf, DuPage County State’s Attorney Bob Berlin told the Naperville Sun that he didn’t “have any evidence to suggest that (the incidents are) connected at all.”

At the time, he said, “The only common denominator is that Naperville police are doing a great job of finding these guns and arresting the people responsible for carrying them and bringing those cases to us.”

On Sept. 30, officers arrested Jalen Littleton, 19, of Hammond, Indiana, after officers observed him and a companion outside of TopGolf Saturday night returning to a parked Chevy Cruze, where a fully-loaded machine gun allegedly sat on the driver’s side floorboard.

Littleton, who does not have a valid firearm owner’s ID card or a concealed carry license, was charged with unlawful use of a weapon-machine gun, a class X felony.

Less than a week prior to Littleton’s arrest, Ronald Richardson, 34, of Chicago, was taken into custody in TopGolf’s parking lot. Just before midnight Sept. 26, officers patrolling the facility allegedly saw the extended magazine of a Glock 27 .40-caliber handgun — loaded with 19 rounds — protruding from the driver’s side of a parked vehicle. Shortly after, Richardson returned to the car and got inside, reports said.

Richardson was out on parole for aggravated unlawful use of a weapon conviction in Cook County at the time of his arrest. He was charged with being an armed habitual criminal and unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon, both felonies.

A very similar arrest was made the night of Sept. 11, when an officer doing a foot patrol of the TopGolf lot allegedly noticed a strong odor of cannabis coming from an unoccupied Volkswagen SUV and observed a gun protruding from the driver’s side door frame.

Darron Prince, a 36-year-old Joliet resident, was charged with armed habitual criminal and armed violence, both class X felonies.