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Police seek rape suspect

Evanston police are investigating the reported criminal sexual assault of a 22-year-old Northwestern University student late Tuesday night in the 1200 block of Simpson St.

In a news release, Deputy Police Chief Joseph Bellino said the victim reported that the offender approached her from behind as she was attempting to enter the front door of her apartment building about 11:25 p.m., put his hand across her mouth and pushed her into the foyer entrance. 

Chief Bellino said the victim reported the offender then ordered her to open the interior security door and the door to her apartment.  He threatened to kill her if she screamed and then made a demand for money.

He said, "The offender positioned himself behind the victim so his face could not be seen.  He also pulled an article of the victim’s clothing over her face so as to keep her from seeing his face.  The offender walked the victim through her apartment, looking for money or valuables, and then directed the victim into a bedroom where he raped her.  Subsequently, the offender tied the victim’s hands behind her back with a telephone cord and left the apartment, taking the victim’s cellular telephone with him."

The victim was taken to Evanston Hospital where she was seen by emergency room personnel and released.

Police describe the assailant as an African-American male, medium build, 5’4” to 5’6” tall, last seen wearing a black sweat shirt and light colored pants.

Chief Bellino said police units immediately initiated a search of the area for the offender while other officers conducted a canvass of the neighborhood for possible witnesses.  Crime scene technicians process the scene and recovered items of potential evidentiary value.

Anyone having information regarding this reported crime is requested to contact the Evanston Police Department's Criminal Investigations Bureau at (847) 866-5040.

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