Jul 20, 2015

From the Chicago Tribune

A Cook County jury has awarded $18 million to three women who were sexually assaulted at knifepoint in Chicago’s Bucktown and Lakeview neighborhoods after a serial rapist walked out of a Near West Side halfway house in 2009.

The jury deliberated less than an hour late Wednesday at the Daley Center before finding St. Leonard’s Ministries negligent for failing to provide adequate security and not alerting police when Julius Anderson went missing.

Anderson, who had been paroled two months earlier despite repeated pleas by Cook County and state officials, sexually assaulted three women over the next 24 days. He pleaded guilty to the assaults in 2013 and is serving a 75-year prison sentence.

Walter Boyd, executive director of St. Leonard’s Ministries, said it plans to appeal, but if the verdict stands, the nonprofit doesn’t have the insurance to come close to covering $18 million in damages. He said he believes the jury made an emotional decision rather than a legal one. Read More