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Lakefront Sex Attack Suspect Held on $750K Bond

By Erin Meyer | February 15, 2013 2:15pm
 The man accused of attacking a woman on the lakefront trail is being held on $750,000 bond.
The man accused of attacking a woman on the lakefront trail is being held on $750,000 bond.
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DNAInfo/Sam Cholke

COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — The woman sprinted toward Lake Shore Drive putting distance between her and the man who had just tackled her as she jogged along a South Side bike trail near the lake, prosecutors said Friday.

She screamed for help.

Attacked Wednesday during a run near 64th Street and South Promontory Drive, the 36-year-old woman narrowly escaped before getting help from three good Samaritans who held the man until police got there, authorities said.

Brandon Williams, a registered sex offender, appeared in a Cook County Court Friday charged with criminal sexual abuse in the attack.

He was ordered held on $750,000 bail by Judge Donald Panarese Jr.

According to prosecutors, Williams, 24, of Calumet Park, served two years in the Illinois Department of Corrections for masturbating on a woman in 2009 at Moraine Valley Community College, where he has taken classes.

Police and prosecutors said people passing by on Lake Shore Drive saved the day.

"The witness observed the defendant on top of the victim as she tried to fight him off," Assistant State's Attorney Joell Zahr said. "The witness stopped his vehicle and chased the defendant, and was able to detain him."

The woman told police she was jogging along the lakefront bike path around 1:30 p.m. when a man grabbed her from behind, threw her to the ground and tried to sexually assault her.

She fought him off and escaped, police said. She then flagged down passing motorists, who grabbed the attacker and wouldn't let him go, police said.

CBS reports one of the good Samaritans was Marine veteran Michael Adams, 24, an East Side resident. Adams was driving along Lake Shore Drive when he saw the woman being assaulted and came to her rescue, he said.

“By that time, he was already attacking her, throwing her on the ground. And I’m protective of my family, so I wish somebody would do the same for my girlfriend or my family,” he told WBBM Newsradio.

“He started running away, and then that’s when I pulled up next to him, and I got out, and held him till the police came,” Adams told WBBM.