An 18-year-old Aurora man has been arrested and charged with multiple felonies in connection to at least four attacks on women in Aurora over the past month.
According to an Aurora Police Department news release, detectives began investigating the case after they received a report from a female in her late 40s of a battery by a man at about 10 a.m. April 17 in the 400 block of North Titsworth Avenue.
The victim told detectives she was walking home when she noticed that a man was following her. After a short time, the man approached her and grabbed her buttocks with both hands. The woman used an umbrella she was carrying to strike the man, and he fled the area.
Six days later, at 11 a.m. April 23, Aurora police officers were called to a report of a sexual assault in the 500 block of East Benton Street. A woman in her 50s told officers that a man followed her into a back yard, grabbed the back of her neck, forced her to the ground and attempted to sexually assault her.
The victim struggled and was able to break free, and the man fled from the area.
Seven days later, on April 30, Aurora police were called to the area of Kensington Place and Elmwood Avenue after a woman in her 20s reported that a man had assaulted her. The victim told officers that a man approached her from behind and grabbed her waist with both hands.
Police said the victim lunged forward, and the man fled the area.
Two days later, on May 3, officers received another report from a woman in her late teens. She told officers that she was walking in the 500 block of Second Avenue when a man approached her from behind and grabbed her buttocks with both hands and then fled the area on foot.
Officers on patrol spotted a man matching the description of the offender in the area and detained him. The victim was able to positively identify the man as 18-year-old Zion Banks of the 200 block of T Street in Aurora.
Detectives from the Aurora Police Department interviewed each victim, spoke to potential witnesses, and collected physical evidence and video from the area of the incidents and were able to link Banks to all four incidents.
Detectives reviewed the details of the investigation and evidence in the case with the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office, who authorized the following charges against Banks:
- Three Class 3 felony charges of Aggravated Battery (Public Way)
- One Class 2 felony charge of Attempted Criminal Sexual Assault (Force/Threat of Force)
- One Class 4 felony charge of Unlawful Restraint
- One Criminal Misdemeanor charge of Obstructing Identification
Detectives are also investigating a similar incident that occurred on April 28 in the area of Garfield Avenue and Chestnut Street.
Detectives believe that Banks may be connected to similar assaults that occurred in the Aurora area in the past several months that were possibly not reported to police. If you believe you were a victim of a similar crime or have any information regarding a potential assault, please call the Aurora Police Investigations Division at 630-256-5500.
“The solving of these cases exemplifies what can be accomplished when members of the Aurora Department work together with citizens and the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office to address crime issues within our community,” Aurora Police Investigative Division Lt. Robb Wallers said. “The teamwork displayed in this investigation between our patrol officers, crime analyst, and investigators was crucial in the offender being apprehended before someone was seriously injured.”
Charges are not proof of guilt. The defendant listed in this release is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial, at which it is the burden of the State to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
SOURCE: Aurora Police Department news release