CHICAGO (CBS) – Someone has thrown urine in people’s faces in a disturbing trend of attacks that have taken place recently in the Andersonville neighborhood.
Each attack has been aimed at people walking their dogs.
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Ald. Andre Vasquez (40) and the victims told CBS 2’s Tara Molina that a man was behind the attacks. Police on Thursday were still trying to track down the man.
Katie Lyons told us she was walking her dog down Ashland Avenue and looked up to smile at the man who passed by. That was when she saw the cup in his hand and the look in his eyes.
“Burget’s look in his face – and just as his eyes looked,” Lyons said. “He had a big cup in his hand, and just as he walked past me, he threw the contents into my eyes. And I cried for help just because my eyes were burning and I could not see and I lost my phone. ”
Lyons hurried home.
“I knew I had to rinse my eyes and no one came to help,” she said.
Lyons was at first unsure of what was being thrown at her. She said it did not click until she asked the first aiders.
“They said I smelled of urine,” Lyons said.
Lyons was seen by his ophthalmologist and checked out of the hospital. Fortunately, she’s okay.
But she is not the only one.
“He chased me and then he threw the urine after me and got the back of the coat,” said a woman named Sue.
Sue was attacked last week – also while walking her dogs.
She is still shaken and is uncomfortable sharing her full name.
“He’s been threatening for a while,” Sue said.
In a bizarre twist, Sue said that the man who attacked her actually went to the police station herself to lodge a complaint against her – and claimed that she set her two dogs loose on him.
“He saw the two witnesses and I think he was trying to get in front of it,” Sue said. “He typically attacks at night.”
Sue followed up with police and asked why he was not remanded in custody.
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“The police officer called back and said, ‘He told us that story, so we let him go,'” Sue said.
Sue said police let the man go without following up with the two witnesses to her attack who shared information with them. Police are not commenting on the allegation.
“Police claim I’m the only one who filed a police report – and I know that’s true,” Sue said. “I do not know why it took so long for them to act on it.”
We have mapped out the three most recent incidents below as reported by Ald. Vasquez – at Ravenswood and Balmoral avenues, Ashland and Balmoral avenues and Ashland and Rascher avenues.
The attack on Sue, 48, happened at Ravenswood and Balmoral avenues happened at. 20.26 on 7 December. Police said the man threw a cup of urine at Sue while walking her dog, and it came in her face and body. This event is classified as a simple battery.
A witness reported that another attack in the 5400 block of North Ashland Avenue occurred at. 14.00 on 30 December. In this incident, a woman with two dogs was walking when someone tried to throw an “unknown substance” but was missing, police said. This incident is classified as a simple assault.
No police report was filed for the incident, which targeted Lyons, which also happened on Ashland Avenue.
Again, these are just the latest incidents. Ald. Vasquez said he believes the attacks started over the summer and he is working directly with the Chicago Police now.
“We have neighbors on the block with sighted dogs. We do not want this to happen to anyone, but God forbid that it happens to anyone who needs their service animals, ”Vasquez said. “We want to make sure that this is dealt with quickly and that we get a solution soon.”
Vasquez said some of the attacks are not being reported.
“They followed up with some of the people who sent us an email,” Vasquez said.
Chicago Police said no one has been remanded in custody in these attacks.
“My hope is definitely that this man will get help,” Lyons said. “I’ve worked in psychiatry for 30 years, and you know, I definitely think he’s a danger to others.”
Chicago police say all of this is still under investigation.
“We want to make sure the CPD examines, but also identify the individual to see if they are willing to accept mental health support,” Vasquez said.
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The councilor is asking any victim of these attacks, who has not yet made a formal police report, to do so now to help with the investigation.