Palatine police were able to locate and return a large sign that had been taken from the home of Warren Kostka.
The sign is part of Kostka's ongoing dispute with the village over flooding issues. The sign states: "WANT WATER? Buy A Home In Palatine."
The sign was taken on Jan. 6 at about 11 p.m. During the incident, someone threw a floodlight against a window of the Kostka home. The light broke a pane of glass, but did not go completely threw the window.
Palatine Police Cmdr. Mike Seebacher said, "The information that was gathered was from an anonymous tipster, basically. Someone who was able to get us the sign back but they wanted to remain anonymous."
Seebacher said the tipster was not involved in the theft.
"So the sign has been recovered and returned to the victim," Seebacher said. "That's the end of the case at this point. There's nobody charged with the theft."
The sign was hanging at Kostka's residence Monday, Jan. 30, with one small addition — a thank you to the Palatine Police Department.
The week the sign was taken the Palatine Council voted against authorizing village officials to negotiate the purchase of Kostka's property. Kostka blames a federally mandated project to separate Palatine's sanitary sewer and storm water system in the 1980s for flooding problems on his property.
At the same meeting, several of Kostka's neighbors complained about the state of his property — sandbags along the side and rear of the home, a trench dug around the home. Near the driveway is a pile of chunks of asphalt — apparently ripped up from the driveway to facilitate the trench.
Palatine Village Manager Reid Ottesen said a letter has been sent to Kostka regarding issues with the property.
Ottesen would not discuss specifics contained in the letter, but said generally the village works with property owners as long as they attempt to fix the problems or come up with a time frame to do so. Before a property owner can be fined, the village has to go to take them to court.