Schaumburg man sentenced to 3½ years for fleeing police, plunging vehicle into Fox River

  • Jarrail Ford-Gresham

    Jarrail Ford-Gresham

By Amanda Marrazzo
Shaw Media
Updated 3/19/2022 8:10 PM

A Schaumburg man has been sentenced to 3½ years in prison after admitting he led Fox River Grove police on a chase that ended with his causing $300,000 in property damage and plunging his Mercedes-Benz into the Fox River.

Jarrail Ford-Gresham, who had been issued a $40,000 warrant for not appearing at his McHenry County court date in January, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to an amended bill of indictment charging aggravated fleeing and eluding police causing more than $300,000 in property damages, and unlawful possession of weapons by a felon.


He was sentenced to 3½ years in prison on both charges, but sentences will be served concurrently, and when released he will serve one year of mandatory supervised release. He is required to serve at least 50% of his sentence, and he will receive credit for time served in jail of 61 days, McHenry County Judge Michael Coppedge said.

Ford-Gresham also must pay $1,498.00 in fines and fees.

His attorney, Assistant Public Defender Rick Behof, asked that Ford-Gresham be admitted into a program for drug and alcohol counseling while in prison. Coppedge agreed to make the recommendation to the Illinois Department of Corrections.

During an attempted traffic stop about 11:40 p.m. Sept. 9, 2020, Ford-Gresham, 32, fled from Fox River Grove police at high speed, Lake County Deputy Chief Christopher Covelli said. He was driving a Mercedes-Benz northwest along Lincoln Avenue when he crossed the intersection at North River Road and sideswiped a parked Honda Odyssey minivan, a fire pit, patio furniture, a gazebo and a deck before plunging into the Fox River on the 400 block of North River Road, according to court records and Covelli.

Police found a Glock pistol inside the vehicle, according to the indictment filed in McHenry County.

Fox River Grove and local fire departments conducted a large-scale search and rescue operation. But the driver was helped to shore by a kayaker, Covelli said, adding the vehicle Ford-Gresham was driving did not belong to him.

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Ford-Gresham suffered minor injuries.

Initial charges also included criminal damage to property and driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol, according to indictment.

Ford-Gresham was convicted of aggravated fleeing for attempting to elude a peace officer on March 24, 2017, in Winnebago County. He also has criminal convictions for promoting prostitution in Will County in 2018 and residential burglary in Cook County in 2007.

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