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Suspect In Violent Beating Of Lakeview Woman, 77, Charged in Other Burglary

 Eli Ruff, 18, was ordered held without bail Monday.
Eli Ruff, 18, was ordered held without bail Monday.
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DNAinfo; Cook County Sheriff's Office

COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — One of the men accused of brutally beating a 77-year-old Lakeview woman in January was charged this week in another Lakeview burglary.

RELATED: Teens Face Attempted Murder Charges in Beating of Lakeview Woman, 77

According to prosecutors, a victim recently identified Eli Ruff, 18, as one of the men who ransacked her Lakeview apartment about 4:40 a.m. Nov. 28 — stealing $600 cash, a laptop and credit cards.

Ruff and two accomplices, who have yet to be identified, suggested they had a gun during the early-morning attack, which targeted two college students and a visiting friend, prosecutors said.

"You pose a threat to all of us," Cook County Judge Adam Bourgeois Jr. told Ruff during a bond hearing Monday. "No bail."

The burglary happened just two days after Thanksgiving in the 1000 block of West Wellington Avenue.

Ruff and two accomplices broke into the students' apartment, woke up the victims and pretended they had a gun before demanding cash and electronics, Assistant State's Attorney Erin Antonietti said in court Monday.

One of the victims directed the burglars toward a stash of cash she kept under her dresser, prosecutors said. The men were able to make off with a laptop, wallet, ID and credit cards — as well as $600 cash.

At one point, Ruff demanded a cellphone from one of the victims, Antonietti said.

The woman, who was still in bed, claimed she didn't own one, but Ruff soon ruffled her blankets and found a phone she'd been trying to hide, according to prosecutors.

He and his accomplices ransacked a bedroom and living room before fleeing, Antonietti noted in court.

Ruff, of the 100 block of East 115th Street, was charged this week with residential burglary, aggravated robbery indicating a firearm and aggravated unlawful restraint in the Nov. 28 attack.

He first made headlines earlier this year after he and two other men were charged with viciously attacking an elderly woman inside her home in the 3600 block of North Magnolia Avenue about 5 a.m. Jan. 9.

The trio beat the woman whenever she called for help during a 45-minute home invasion that netted the burglars jewelry, coins, a TV and the victim's Honda Accord, authorities said. The woman suffered broken bones and bleeding to her brain, prosecutors said.

Ruff, Tracie Towbridge, 19, and Lilearl Taylor, 19, were charged with attempted murder and held on $2 million bail. The trio was arrested after Ruff fell asleep at the wheel of the victim's Accord and crashed on the Dan Ryan Expressway, court records show.

Ruff was back in court Jan. 21 after prosecutors linked him to two additional Lakeview burglaries that took place in December and January in the 3700 block of North Lakewood Avenue — less than two blocks from where the elderly woman was attacked.

RELATED: Teen Broke Into 2 Lakeview Homes Before Brutally Beating Woman, 77, Prosecutors Say

In the first incident, Ruff is accused of breaking into a 33-year-old man's home on Dec. 22 and snapping photos of himself wearing the victim's clothing, smoking weed and flashing gang signs.

Ruff then on Jan. 1 stole several laptops from a different apartment on the same street and later sold them — only to have the victim realize the computers were stolen goods and hand them over to police, according to prosecutors.

He was charged in January with burglary and theft.

According to prosecutors, Ruff has prior juvenile convictions for theft and robbery.

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