Jeanette Wossow/Contributor

A 30-year-old man who initially was accused of sexually assaulting his 34-year-old girlfriend at gunpoint in North Riverside during the early morning hours of Aug. 6 was charged with one count of misdemeanor domestic battery after the victim reportedly told police she was unwilling to charge her boyfriend with such a serious crime.

The victim called police at 7:25 a.m. on Aug. 6, saying she’d run out of her home in the 2300 block of 8th Avenue and that her boyfriend was still inside the house, possibly in the company of two other women. She also stated her boyfriend was armed, according to police.

Unable to definitively determine whether the offender or the other women were still inside the home, and with a possible barricade situation developing, North Riverside police at about 9 a.m. called for the assistance of the Emergency Services Team from the Northern Illinois Police Alarm System, a SWAT unit.

Heavily armed police officers surrounded the home and patrolled the area in an attempt to locate the suspect.

However, the suspect had left the area just minutes after the victim called 911. According to police, a female friend ordered an Uber for the suspect. The ride share picked up the suspect about two blocks away and drove him to Chicago’s Brighton Park neighborhood, near his friend’s home.

Eventually, police were able to reach the suspect via cellphone and convinced him to turn himself in. But police remained at the scene until after the suspect turned himself in, to Riverside police, at about 11:20 a.m.

North Riverside Police Chief Lane Niemann said the heavy police presence was justified due to the victim’s certainty that the suspect was still in the house, that there was a gun allegedly involved and other people were reported to be inside.

“The suspect walked into the Riverside [Police Department], so after that we still had to clear the house in case of other victims,” Niemann said in an email. “That’s what NIPAS’ SWAT did. It takes time to clear a house, and remember it’s an active crime scene, so they did it the best they could without destroying evidence.”

Cook County Sheriff’s police also processed the house for evidence and searched for a weapon, which was not located. Police also did not locate any other women inside the house.

However, police did recover a spent .45-caliber shell casing from the floor of an upstairs bedroom where the victim initially alleged she had been forced to have sex against her will.

The victim at first reported that the suspect held a gun to her head. Later she said she never saw the gun, but heard a single gunshot during the incident.

According to the police report, the victim and a female friend had been out to a couple of bars that night, including one on Ogden Avenue in Berwyn. During a disturbance at that bar at about 2 a.m., the victim lost track of her friend, and she contacted her boyfriend to see if he could pick her up.

Her boyfriend reportedly became angry when he went to the bar and didn’t find her there. A bouncer reportedly told him that she left in the company of another man. The two finally connected – inside the car with the suspect were his brother and two women, according to the police report. 

The victim and her boyfriend reportedly began arguing inside the vehicle, and her boyfriend reportedly punched her in the face. Near Harlem and Ogden, the victim reportedly jumped out of the vehicle and began running north.

But the suspect reportedly dragged her back into the vehicle before driving back to their North Riverside residence. The victim told police she went upstairs into the bedroom and locked the door, but the suspect allegedly kicked it in and began punching, slapping and biting her.

The victim said she then heard a lot of yelling and a gunshot before he allegedly forced her to have sex, according to the police report. The two fell asleep afterward, but when the victim awoke, she reportedly told her boyfriend she was calling police and left the home.

The woman’s boyfriend reportedly responded by throwing a large quantity of her clothing out of the bedroom window. The victim reportedly got into her car at that time, drove around the corner and dialed 911.

In addition to charging the suspect with battery, North Riverside police learned he was wanted on a warrant issued June 27 for failure to appear in court in connection with a previous battery arrest. He was scheduled to appear in bond court on Aug. 8, after the Landmark’s press time.