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Posted on Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 5:59 a.m.

Ann Arbor Police considering 'serial rapist' scenario after new suspect information emerges in South State attack

By Heidi Fenton

After examining the scene of a sexual assault reported Monday on South State Street, Ann Arbor police investigators have determined the suspect was at least 5 inches shorter than they first thought.

That conclusion brings the suspect description closer to the man described in two other recent assaults and could mean police are dealing with just one person or a “serial rapist,” Detective Lt. Mark St. Amour said Tuesday.

“We’re not sure what we’re dealing with, multiple attackers or one,” he said. “The cluster that occurred over the weekend, (with) multiple incidents involving female assaults, is rare, not common.”

The spate of attacks began around 11 p.m. Friday when a 19-year-old Ypsilanti woman said she was walking near Community High School in the 400 block of North Division Street. A man grabbed her, she said, and tried to pull her into a secluded area. The woman broke free and ran.

Two hours later, around 2 a.m. Saturday, another woman said she was grabbed from behind while walking in the 900 block of Greenwood Avenue. The 22-year-old female told police a man lifted up her dress and fondled her, before she also broke free.

A third attack—the most serious one—was reported two days later.

A woman told police a man grabbed her as she walked through the 700 block of South State Street while on the way home from a party. He reportedly pulled her into an alley off campus near the University of Michigan’s Weill Hall and raped her.

Thumbnail image for assaultsuspectjpg.jpg

Ann Arbor Police released this composite sketch of the suspect in a Monday morning sexual assault on South State Street.

The suspect in the first two attacks was described as 5 feet, 6 inches tall with an olive complexion. He had no facial hair and was wearing a zipped-up black hooded sweatshirt and khaki cargo pants.

Police now believe the alleged rape suspect stands between 5 feet, 6 inches and 5 feet, 10 inches tall. He is described as white, with brown hair and brown eyes. He was wearing a green T-shirt and khaki cargo pants at the time of the attack.

St. Amour said police have interviewed the alleged rape victim and she is doing “OK.” The woman has been released from the hospital.

St. Amour said a man suspected of grabbing several women near Briarwood Mall in June remains jailed and police see no connection. Still, he warned the recent spate of attacks is uncommon and urged walkers to exercise added caution.

“The suspect is still outstanding and we continue to tell students, especially females ... to be aware of their surroundings, to travel in groups of two or more. Think twice about cutting through short cuts to a certain area,” he said. “Try to stay in lit, well-traveled areas.

Night patrol officers were briefed Monday evening on the attacks and nothing suspicious was reported overnight, St. Amour said.

Safety advocates urge support for victims

As police continue to investigate, local sexual assault prevention advocates have stepped forward to share their message.

Holly Rider-Milkovich, director of the Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center supported by U-M, said several students had contacted a 24-hour hotline manned by trained professionals to share their concerns.

“We have received some calls from students who’ve experienced sexual violence in the past,” she said, explaining how those experiences can come back as painful memories.

Rider-Milkovich said she has used the past couple of days as a launching pad to share the center’s message of educating the community on assault prevention. The center has posted messages on its Facebook and Twitter pages and has an editorial planned for the student-run newspaper, The Michigan Daily, reminding students of resources available to report and recover from assaults.

Rider-Milkovich said acceptance of assault victims has improved since the center started 25 years ago, but there is still much room to grow in encouraging victims to approach authorities.

National data indicates nearly 95 percent of sexual assaults go unreported, she said.

“We live in a victim-blaming culture where, when a sexual assault occurs, the focus is more often on what a survivor was doing or saying or acting, or how he or she conducted themselves in the past, than we place on a perpetrator’s choices or actions,” she said.

Rider-Milkovich emphasized the importance of creating a culture that is accepting of victims and said the university’s choice to send an alert message to the campus community with information on the attacks helps to underline the seriousness of the situation and the goal to have an arrest made.

Victims and the legal system

The Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s office has placed a greater emphasis over the last five years on guiding victims of assault through the legal system as their assailants are prosecuted.

Victim/Witness Director Brenda Quiet said a single victim’s advocate has been dedicated solely to sexual assault cases since 2004.

“Victims know that they have one contact. They establish a relationship very early on—there is always a go-to person,” she said. “They know the victim advocate is a phone call away.”

Quiet said the advocate participates in meetings with prosecutors and is present at all court hearings. That will happen when police arrest a suspect in the recent cases, she said.

The consistency has allowed the department to more efficiently refer victims to community resources available for recovery, like the SafeHouse Center, which helps assault victims throughout Washtenaw County, and the local Child Advocacy Center, which helps in juvenile cases.

Heidi Fenton covers police and courts for Reach her at or 734-623-4673. You also can follow her on Twitter or subscribe to's e-mail newsletters.



Tue, Aug 2, 2011 : 5:31 p.m.

Take a self defense class! Recommend it to people you know. I have been enrolled in a martial arts/self defense class right here in Ann Arbor for only three months and have learned several ways to prevent, escape, and defend an attack. Guns may be one answer, but why stop or start there? Get yourself and your loved ones prepared. The skills that I have learned so far have completely changed my outlook on how I carry myself, and I just started. The techniques are practical for any and all situations, regardless of the size, age, or gender of the persons involved. Please learn how to help yourself and people you know. Be aware of all your surroundings. Take note of strange people or events. Use your intuition whenever you feel something bad may happen. Don't walk alone or empty handed. Use whatever tool you have with you to defend if necessary.


Mon, Jul 25, 2011 : 3:18 a.m.

I had to create an account and sign in JUST to say that I accidentally "voted up" on that A2MOMof5's comment, but on the contrary I completely disagree with her comment! I thought maybe there would be a "vote down" rating on there, but when I clicked it went to that. That being said, of course women (and men, for that matter) would be wise to stay vigilant of their surroundings, try to go out in pairs at night, etc, etc. But they shouldn't HAVE to. Any number of circumstances could've lead to these girls being alone at night, and people shouldn't have to be scared to go out alone after dark!!! If someone is sick enough to attack and rape women on the street, he'll find a way to do it whether they are walking alone or not. As for getting a firearm to protect themselves, that's a whole nother discussion... I can't even imagine what kind of chaos would ensue if everyone had a firearm!!!


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 7:54 p.m.

What we as citizens of Ann Arbor need to focus on how to deter crime in our town. This is not a gun issue. Those of us who carry will continue to do so, those who are not comfortable with firearms will continue to avoid them. There have been many helpful suggestions by the commentators of this article. Reducing crime is a process, and all residents need to be involved and use their voices to send the message, "Not in OUR town". What happens to one person in town affects us all. It does not matter that we do not know the women who were attacked. It could have easily been our sister, our daughter or our mother. When do we as concerned citizens start to look into what we can do to increase our own safety and the safety of others. We are the first line of defense for our own safety and well being. Instead of arguing on who is right, lets brainstorm on how we can increase safety, educate the uninformed and help make OUR town a safer place to live.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 7:41 p.m.

It's too bad that this traumatic, life-altering event has been turned into a platform for gun-control debate and snarky comments about murals in Ann Arbor. Please consider the victim of this crime and the suffering she endured and will continue to endure before turning this into yet another issue of left versus right.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 7 p.m.

I'm sure that the city of Ann Arbor will solve this by laying off more police and buying more art...


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 5:38 p.m.

So, at first this rapist was 6'5", white, then olive, then white again, then 5'6", or 5'10"... And this is the first comment (out of 91) about this? But is someone mentions the word "gun" everyone's got to make a comment. Tuh!


Sun, Jul 24, 2011 : 7 a.m.

@ Jeff. The point I was making was that the description of the serial rapist has changed numerous times (5 times) and there was not one comment about it. How can a suspect be caught if the description is wrong? Also, my comment wasn't directed towards pro-gun activists, anti-gun activists were included in my comment as well. Hope that clears it up for you.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 5:48 p.m.

Your comment does not make sense. Maybe people feel passionately about the security the Second Amendment gives, and don't care as much about the vagueness of the criminals descriptions, which may or may not be 'something' to make note of. You are linking gun interests to this, where a link seems not to be there, other t han the possibility that you just wanted to use a comment to vaguely and unclearly bash pro-gun advocates who are thinking a gun could have prevented this crime.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:55 p.m.

I appreciate the focus on these unfortunate victims' plight. Thanks and thanks as well to the victim support program. Sexual assault is a horrible crime. So are all the other kinds of assault because they can lead to permanent injury and death. As a senior citizen, I had to face the fact that I can no longer run or fight "worth a darn" compared to my younger self. We must all face our vulnerabilities and accept responsibility for compensating through training and being prepared mentally and appropriately armed. Not mentioned so far in that regard: when we go about our routines with a sense of anxiety over threats, we can become more obvious potential prey. Our own anxiety influences our "body language" and facial expression. If one prepares with proper training and appropriate self defense weapons - our confidence (and our "smarts") present a different picture to predators out there. I recommend searching for good training sources on the internet, there are defense training organizations for a wide variety of situations. There has been a proliferation of these organizations: can we guess why?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:42 p.m.

The only way to prevent things like this is to use the Second Amendment (right to bear arms) that the Founders gave us. The book MORE GUNS, LESS CRIME (U of chicago Press) shows that seemingly beyond a doubt when it is generally assumed that people are armed, or could be armed, crime absolutely plummits, and things like this stupid cowardly serial rapist have no ability to carry out their crimes, since they know that they are in serious danger. This is one of hte obvious, well documented secrets out there: guns kill crime. when britain and Australia both banned gun ownership around the same time in the 90s, crime instantly skyrocketed, and has been since. Chicago is another good example: strictest gun control laws accompany most crime ridden city. Cities and areas wtih highest gun ownership have lowest crime in almost every case. Rapist attack because they know victims are defenseless. this is also why the government is so concerned with hoarding all sorts of weapons just for them, and disarming other nations (Iran, etc.). We live in a climate where these details are little known, and mere suggestion of what I've said here draws all sorts of backlash, and the big-money mass media is also hugely anti-armed-citizens, but the stats don't lie, and override all our assumptions: with armed women, the rapists are scared to walk around at night, not the city's women!


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:15 p.m.

Guns are not the answer, but more tax payer funded wall murals are.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 3:37 p.m.

In my opinion, the problem with suggesting guns for self-defense is that you should never, ever have a gun that you're not prepared to use. A moment's hesitation can put the gun in your assailant's hands. And now the gun you purchased to protect you is the weapon being used against you. Or, you become the assailant because, out of fear, you shoot a kind father of two who really did just want directions to the Brown Jug. People who are going to carry weapons should be well-trained to use them. I don't EVER think the victim is to blame and it is surely a woman's right to NOT BE RAPED (no matter where she is, what she's doing, or what she's wearing). However, as a woman, I do exercise extreme caution. I avoid going anywhere at night that would require me to walk alone in dark or secluded areas. If I have to fill up my car at night, I go to the well-lit gas station with lots of cars rather than the poorly lit one where I'm the only customer. If I've been out with friends, I try to make sure someone I trust walks me to my car (or I get a lift from someone parked closer). But as one person mentioned, that's no guarantee either if your so-called friend is the one who rapes you. But I also think it's naive to think that our actions have no impact on our risk. I do the things I mention above because it minimizes the risk. There are people out there that don't care that you have a right to be safe and secure. I am responsible for doing my best to guard my own safety. If I'm intoxicated, walking alone in the middle of the night on a deserted street, my risk of being victimized is much higher than it is at the mall in the middle of the day when I'm sober. You're less alert when you're intoxicated, so you're less likely to see danger approaching. And being in dark, deserted areas provide opportunities for those with criminal intentions. I don't think anyone is suggesting that the victims are to blame, but refusing to take caution increases your risk of being victimized.


Thu, Jul 21, 2011 : 12:19 a.m.

@Jeff: Actually, you're making a lot of assumptions about me just because I happen to think that people who carry guns should be trained to use them. My comments are not anti-gun. My father was a gun collector, and I own guns myself. My comments were coming from someone who has actually learned how to use them and has been taught to have respect for them. Possessing a gun that you don't know how to use can be dangerous. I wasn't disagreeing with your stance that armed citizens reduce crime. I believe you're probably right about that. However, that has to happen at a larger scale to be effective. And I believe in our right carry arms. And I also believe that if we are going to carry them, we have a responsibility to learn how to use them. My point was that guns don't make you safer unless you know how to use them. And since we DON'T live in a country where every citizen carries a weapon, there IS a risk that women will be sexually assaulted... and to that end, using some caution might be considered common sense.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 6:16 p.m.

You wrote: "A moment's hesitation can put the gun in your assailant's hands. And now the gun you purchased to protect you is the weapon being used against you." I think ever time i mention how guns reduce crime, oddly, somebody blurts out this response. Yes, there are cases where the gun meant to protect does not. It's not a 100 percent protection, and nobody ever said it is, so your point is not relevant. Guns merely give one a chance, and put fear into rapists. Violent gangs always go for the unarmed, defenseless, and leave gun-owners alone. The same could happen to rape scenarios, if we merely utilized the Second Amendment that Jefferson and the Founders gave us. There are huge studies on this issue, and in nearly all cases of non-extreme poverty, guns reduce crime dramatically. In the famous case of Kennesaw, GA, crime virtually went to zero over a year once gun ownership was dramatically increased. So, again, your point is not relevant, is not cognizant of the stats and academic findings, and is really just an anti-gun commnet, probably just because you heard some politician on television tell you how horrible guns are (while their government produces more weapons than coudl ever be used).

Ron Granger

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:58 p.m.

For those advocating firearms as some kind of solution... The problem with firearms is the threat is often too close before you realize it is a threat. Unfortunately, a lot of assaults are surprise attacks. It's very easy for someone you pass on the sidewalk to spin around and hit, or grab you, from behind. It's also easy for someone you pass on the sidwalk to raise their hand and say "excuse me, do you know where the brown jug is?" Defense experts teach police officers that someone within 21' is very hard to stop even when you have a gun. None of us wants to be wrestling over a gun. So while I think it's great that we have the option of training and permits, they really aren't a good solution. They don't work against surprise attacks.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 7:22 p.m.

@Ron: One can lessen a "surprise" attack by becoming more aware of their surroundings and being in the moment no matter where they are. Using headphones to listen to music, talking on a cell phone while walking down the street, increase vulnerability. I can hear if someone is 20 feet behind me. When walking I give occasional glances at my perimeter. Yes I look behind me when walking down the street and will stop, turn and let the person behind me pass, rather than walk with someone within striking distance. I agree that guns are not the option for everyone. Unless you are willing to put in the time to train properly, and unless you are willing to pull the trigger and put your attacker down, you shouldn't be carrying. I have made the choice to be prepared to use a firearm to protect myself and my family. How do you propose to protect yourself if you were attacked by an assailant? @Ricebrnr: thank you for your eloquent statements.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 5:03 p.m.

Jeff, Appreciate the sentiment but we don't pull our firearms with the intention of just cocking it or shooting into the ground or air. Pulling a firearm, discharging it or not, at someone or not is the same application of deadly force in the eyes of the law. If it was necessary to draw your weapon to protect your life, better to place that shot on an attacker than into the ground. Any other response opens you up to legal and moral liability.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:48 p.m.

Yeah, but with a gun, you at least have a chance, and as is so very well documented, often the gun carrier does succeed in using the gun to gain safety. Guns need not always be used, sometimes just cocking it, or firing into the ground ends a dangerous situation. Again, as I said in previous comments, the U of Chicago Press book, MORE GUNS LESS CRIME, clearly shows that all crime, including rape, radically is reduced when citizens are armed. Even if a citizen is not armed, in a gun-toting second amend. public, the criminal will have the feeling, 'oh, she coudl be armed, so i better stay clear.' W/ this U of Chicago book, not sure how it can be so easioly overlooked that guns are not a solution to be taken incredibly seriously.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:35 p.m.

I'd just like to add that those properly trained in self defense with a gun ARE made aware of the "21-foot rule" and you can also get training in avoiding the kinds of surprise attack you mention. It begins with: trust no strangers and adopt new habits while out of your own home. Treat every potential threat as a specific kind and act according to its kind. It can be crossing the street to avoid potential threats or just taking out your cell phone and dialing 911 if a lone individual keeps shadowing you. Also: training to get the gun out and leveled, firing from the hip is a good way to stop on-coming threats. (The list goes on, but you get the idea, I'm sure.)


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:49 p.m.

Btw you neglect to mention the same experts you mention wouls still rather have a gun than nothing at all. In fact they'd rather have a gun than a knife. A knife than a stick A stck than pepper spray Pepper spray than empty hands Hand to hand combat is always last. Why don't you ask those experts why?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:29 p.m.

Oh for crying out loud. Nobady said it was the one and only solution. It is one part of defense, not the most important, just the most misunderstood and vilified. If you do find or make the chance for defense after you've been attacked by someone bigger and stronger than you, harsh word aint gonna cut it now is it? Easy to poo poo a distasteful idea, how about you offer some viable solutions instead?

Ron Granger

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:40 p.m.

We gotta get this guy. The last serial rapist in Ann Arbor was ultimately spotted by a cab driver. There are way more cabbies than police on our streets and they do a lot to report crime. As I recall, there was a tip that the rapist wore white gloves. A cabbie spotted a suspect with the gloves and called it in, ending a very dark period in Ann Arbor's history. After looking at the photo, is anyone else wondering if Matt Damon is shooting a movie in the area?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 9:12 p.m.

Yes - I've been keeping an eye out for a Matt Damon look-alike. Thank God for that Cabbie. His awareness led to the capture of a rapist/murderer. I remember that he was to receive a reward. He said he was going to give the money to his ex for the child support that he owed her. I always wondered if he did. Like A2MOMof5 has pointed out many times here - this is going to take a community response here. We all need to be keeping an eye out for the safety of all of us.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:27 p.m.

Ricebrnr: Your suggestion of education is about the best we can do most likely, even though people want to disect it. U of M, if you're not offering something like this at no cost, shame on you. Guys, if you are not checking with the gals you hang out with to make sure they don't need an escort home, shame on you. Can you say community effort?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:50 p.m.

Elaine and others-- Your comments are harmful and misguided. When I was raped at an off-campus party, I didn't report it or go to the hospital because I knew people like you would tell me I shouldn't have been drinking, or shouldn't have been alone with him, or any other number of "shoulds" that blame me for what he did. Yes, there are things that can be done sometimes, in some circumstances, to reduce the risk of being attacked. However, it is impossible to 100% prevent. I have a friend who asked a male friend to walk her home from the bar so she would be safer. He raped her on the way home. It is not my responsibility to not get raped. It's the responsibility of men to not rape me.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 5:09 p.m.

Again first my condolences to you. While I understand your sentiment, and agree that people should not assault other people, you do in fact bear responsibility for your own safety to the best of your ability. No one can be everywhere and whenever you are but you. You are always going to be the first responder to any incident you are involved in. While you cannot be blamed for being the victim, that does not absolve you from taking care of yourself either. AGAIN NOT BLAMING YOU just a slightly different perspective and advice.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:48 p.m.

Having lived through the era of John Norman Collins and the "Saturday Night Slasher" Coral Watts (early 80's) first as a high school student and then as a grad student. The best piece of advise I can give young women (and men). Be AWARE of your surrounding..take your head phones out.. and travel with a group of people.. preferably both male and female if you are out late, or have a gathering at one persons residence and stay over night..My friends and I did that all the time... Please stay safe


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:38 p.m.

In my opinion, owning / carrying a gun is not always the answer. I was raped in my home at knifepoint, when there was a gun in the next room. (This was many years ago. The gun was my roommate's). By the time I got to the gun, the bad guy was gone. He'd slipped into my roommate's window while she was out, waited until I fell asleep, and then woke me up with a knife in my throat. A gun may have been helpful, but then, I might have gotten my neck slashed if I moved. I think there are some times when it's impossible to say exactly *what* the correct response is, or how to get out of a situation like that. Bottom line is, I'm still alive, so I did something right. I think the answer to this sort of violence is education, vigalence (sp?), and harsh punishment for perpitrators. My heart goes out to the survivors of these horrible attacks. Yes, it will take a while before you'll feel 'normal' and strong again. Please work with a counselor that you trust, or with the folks at SAPAC. Talk it through. You will heal and become stronger.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:44 p.m.

yes, while guns are not a perfect defense, and does not always work as desired, they however radically reduce crime, which oddly is 'overlooked' by government officials (a citation for this claim was in the previous note I just left).


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:59 p.m.

Ellen, First my condolences. Second we gunnies agree with you. Guns are not always the answer. What people continually miss is the message that it can be a viable option in an arsenal of responses. Responses starting with awareness and vigilance. Even you stated it might have been helpful, if it had been accessible. That is the essence of carrying a sidearm. Availibility IF needed.

Elaine F. Owsley

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 11:47 a.m.

Back during the John Norman Collins episodes, in spite of the warnings by police, city, University, and everyone in between, young women were out alone after dark into the wee hours of the morning. A policeman friend wondered repeatedly what it would take to make women behave responsibly. No one is invincible. Girls, you are your own first line of defense.


Mon, Jul 25, 2011 : 3:29 a.m.

I agree with Mariella (love the name, btw)... are women supposed to live in fear and paranoia all the time? That sounds reeeaaaaall nice. X-(


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 9:24 p.m.

A2Mom - Nothing in the articles suggests that any of the women who were attacked were in any way drunk, on drugs, or distracted with cell phones. You don't know if these women were walking home from the library after a night of studying (and thus needed to get home somehow). Unfortunately, U-M's campus (and the city itself) is not well-lighted, nor is it secured, and there is no police (city or campus) to speak of. Other colleges have at least one security officer in each building. I have NEVER seen a foot patrol security officer on the UM campus. These attacks didn't happen downtown - they happened essentially on the UM campus (or across the street from it). The U needs to be better about protecting its students. Still, the point is: it doesn't matter what these women were doing before they were attacked - we need to stop focusing on blaming the victim, and more on what we can do to find and punish the attacker(s) and prevent more assaults from happening.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:34 p.m.

No Mariella, we need not hide, but women need to be aware of their surroundings and the situations they put themselves in. To be alert to possible danger is to take responsibility for oneself. Students need to realize that the downtown area is not an extension of their dorms. Choosing not to put oneself in the position to be seen as viable prey, is the responsibility of the individual. We must also look at the amount of drugs and drinking that goes on way into the late hours downtown. Women who want to keep themselves safe have to realize there is a correlation to being seen as prey when they are wandering downtown alone after they have been drinking. It is unfortunately it takes a rapist to motivate people to wake up and act responsibly in order to protect themselves.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:42 p.m.

OK, so let's all stay in our houses and never go outside. Good plan!


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:43 p.m.

Totally agree, Elaine. And Ladies, I wouldn't be too relaxed and confident in the daylight hours either. There are plenty of alleyways, nooks and crannies in this town, and I'm going to bet that this guy is going to get bolder and more aggressive before he's apprehended.

Jeff Renner

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 11:13 a.m.

I thought that this was a new story, or at least updated, because the byline is "Posted: Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 5:59 a.m." But upon reading it all the way to the end, I see that it is the same as yesterday, as evidenced by the times of the comments. Why have you represented this as a new story?

Paula Gardner

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 11:31 a.m.

I changed the time stamp this morning when we used our new homepage reconfiguration to prominently display the art fair coverage. We're using that during the fairs but also considering how best to play news stories that may not be best in the "river of news" on the homepage. It's not something we need to do during other times, but I thought this story - given the time that it was published last night and the attention readers are paying to the attacks - still needed prominence on the page.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:39 a.m.

~St. Amour said police have interviewed the alleged rape victim and she is doing "OK."~ I understand that the rape suspect is "alleged" but didn't realize the victim was also?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:12 a.m.

A2MOMof5, I am not going to assume the guilt or innocence of anyone involved in this investigation. I do not know anyone involved, nor was I there to see what happened. As such, all I can do is wait for the legal system to work. Anyone who does not have any vested interest in the outcome would be wise to do the same. Rape is a VERY serious and invasive crime, and should be treated as such. In no way am I trying to minimize her claim; I just am not in a position to know any of the facts of this case.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 3:34 a.m.

People in this country are still in the dark ages regarding rape. The victim is put on trial and seen as somehow culpable for the actions of their attacker. The police are looking at this man as a serial rapist, yet you are creating doubt about the victim. I am sure if it were your college aged daughter you would be looking at this situation differently. Yes, I agree there are those that cry wolf, but how many thousands of women are raped and abused each year that do not report the attack for fear of being doubted or raped all over again by the court system. There is a much bigger chance that this guy has been doing this for a long time and cannot be rehabilitated.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 3:16 a.m.

Think of the many cases in recent history where there was no rape, but people were arrested and only later did the truth come out. Odds are good that any given reported rape is real, but there is always a chance that the claim is fake.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 3:15 a.m.

Doing "OK?" Really? Now that has to be the most ignorant and insensitive thing they could ever say. I believe this woman is not going to be "ok" for a very long time.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:21 a.m.

I feel that it is pointless to bring guns into this crime's solution. The only way to get him is to send out a few dozen decoys who are trained and deputized to respond in a forceful manner and capture him asap. They know the times and place, they know the routine. Set out some undercover bait and snare him.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 3:11 a.m.

I do not understand all this fear regarding the use of firearms. Do you mean to tell me you would rather be beaten and raped than be trained in the proper use of a handgun and have the ability to defend yourself and more than likely save your own life? That would make you the decoys out there that would prevent the rest of us from being attacked. Thank you for volunteering...


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:50 a.m.

SO let's get this straight. A victim has been selected and cornered. The crime will be violent. The chance that a would be victim can turn the tables is such an abhorrent idea? <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> Perfect quote for you: &quot;Gun Control: The theory that a woman found dead in an alley, raped and strangled with her panty hose, is somehow morally superior to a woman explaining to police how her attacker got that fatal bullet wound.&quot;


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:41 a.m.

Great now bring a gun into this already violent crime. They guy has overpowered his victim. I'm sure keeping a gun in her control and not having it taken by him is a sure thing.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:25 a.m.

Bet any armed would be victim would disagree. Bet most victims wished different.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:49 a.m.

Ann Arbor is getting a little &quot;ghetto&quot; lol, no but on serious side they need to catch this guy and get him on probation ASAP so he can start being forced to get into sex offender treatment so he can be cured of his desire to force woman to have sex with him.


Sat, Jul 23, 2011 : 6:56 a.m.

there is no such thing as a &quot;cure&quot; for that


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:29 a.m.

We need gun permits upon signing up for classes


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:53 a.m.

Prevention is great, how about teaching mitigation and defense? How about organizing classes to teach women willing to take safety into their own hands? How about taking the fear and ignorance out of the most effective equalizer to disparity in size, force and numbers? The misfortune of others sad as it may be is the opportunity for life lessons for those willing to learn. To paraphrase a well known tome: Give a woman a fish, feed her for a day...teach a woman to fish and feed her for a lifetime.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:49 p.m.

@loopy- you could teach till u are blue in the face and it wouldnt do a single thing when it comes to people who commit these kind of serial crimes, they are wired different and teaching them the immoral ways of their actions will do nothing.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 11:20 a.m.

Interesting that you equate defense of one's life from and during an attack to revenge Now that really is loopy


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:52 a.m.

How about teaching boys that rape is an absolutely abhorrent crime so that I don't have to walk around with a gun and a revenge fantasy?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:57 a.m.

Empowering a woman to fight off an attacker, deters THAT attacker. Fleeing is fine and good. What do you do when that is not the immediate and available option? Too often people thing either it won't happen to me OR I can run away. If everyone were correct there'd be no such thing as victims. Stuff happens, plan now, prepare for it and counter-intuitively it may never happen to you. BUT if it does, are better or worse off for having prepared?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:52 a.m.

Empowering women to defend themselves has many positive side effects, but deterring criminals is hardly one of them. The first thing you learn in self defense is to flee whenever possible. I believe the best solution is to patrol neighborhoods where students live and provide ample lighting. I lived in these types of neighborhoods once. No one cares about the quality of living because student residents will be gone in 3 years max. I feel for the permanent residents who share these areas with students.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:46 a.m.

This is why the city needs every police officer available. There is no guarantee that with more policemen that this suspect will be caught or if any of these crimes could be prevented. However, the odds can only go up with more bodies. The cuts to public safety are simply unacceptable and this is a prime example of why cops need to come before art and planting more trees (as much as everyone likes trees).


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:17 p.m.

There is a valuable resource no one is talking about. THE PUBLIC. The police are great, but I agree they cannot be everywhere. Perhaps the AAPD, the U of M, and the public can put together their resources to establish safety methods for the people of our town. We have students from all over the world, many not accustomed to a large city and its problems. Creating a network of buddy systems, rides home and such would increase awareness, and educate the public on keeping safe. . All the young men in the fraternities in town can make better use of their time rather than drinking and partying. Fraternities and sororities are service organizations, they can help. Perhaps the U of M can offer a free course for college credit for those interested in working on methods to improve safety, by creating programs to provide buddy systems, rides or walks home. This is an easy &quot;We Can Do&quot;, if everyone CHOOSES to be a part of the solution.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:28 p.m.

Ron, No one is suggesting we simply pour an obscene amount of the budget into the police department. Simply throwing money at something does not fix the problem. You are also correct that you can not put a cop on every corner and sometimes there is not much the police can do to prevent every crime. However, it appears a violent individual is targeting women in an escalating fashion in our city and the city government is slashing police jobs yet we have money for 300k+ tree contract available(and yes I realize they claim that money can't be used for police). Judging from the comments that does not sit well with readers here. Everyone enjoys amenities but I think we all want to feel safer first. I don't agree also when you say higher police presence does not deter crime. It can't stop everything but a uniformed presence does a heck of lot to place some fear into a potential criminal and conversely if there is no fear of a police officer ever showing up crime is allowed to grow (look at Detroit's sad lack of officers).

Ron Granger

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:06 p.m.

That is nonsense. These attacks aren't being done in the presence of others. You will never have enough cops to prevent rape. I don't even think doubling the number of police would deter rape, but I can't cite a study on it. You can't put a cop on every corner. So the idea that we need to put all of our resources into police spending, and forgo art and trees; that's just a complete non-starter. Take away the police cars and put them on bikes.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 7 a.m.

Well said. Even more importantly is the impact of police presence as a deterrent to crime before it occurs. More bodies to solve crimes is commendable, but more on the street in cars and on foot sends a message that crime is not welcome. In times that are flush, it is fine to celebrate the accomplishments and fortune of a city with those emblements of success: art, parks, gazebos, whatever. However, these are lean times--the worst economic condition since the Carter years or, maybe, the Depression. Sparse resources need to be directed towards those in need and towards keeping the peace and safety of the community. Crime on the south end of the City is becoming endemic. This needs to be addressed before that part of the city becomes lost to the thieves and hooligans.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:30 a.m.

Brenda Quiet needs to realize that the victim's support needs to start before the Prosecutor's office is involved. In the 2009 case where a UM football player was alleged to have raped another student, the victim was subjected to extreme peer pressure not to press charges. One of the suspects friends threatened to &quot;rape her again&quot; if she pressed charges. It is no wonder she decided not to press charges. Where was Brenda Quiet's support in that case?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:29 a.m.

Wouldn't it be great if the City of Ann Arbor had beat cops instead of 100 un-mowed parks.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:46 p.m.

uou guys do realize that when it comes to a serial type crime that the number of cops has NOTHING to do with the number of cops on the street. To effect serial crimes with the number of cops you would need the have a cop on every corner, every dark alley, every parking structure etc, ALL the time and then your chances of stopping a serial criminal (they are not like other criminals, LOL) would only be very sligthly marginally better.

John B. Knot

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:29 a.m.

It would be great if the University of Michigan police provided a few beat cops. After all, the majority of these assaults are occuring in their neighborhood.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:45 a.m.

Are you suggesting we should sell the parks to fund more beat cops? Or that the parks should be mowed, so that we save money on that somehow, and can then afford cops....


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:18 a.m.

it is every citizens responsibility to guard their own safety. A permit to carry a concealed firearm is fairly easy to obtain in Michigan, and is a very logical and responsible way to easily protect oneself. When trained properly a firearm owner can protect themselves quite accurately.


Sat, Jul 23, 2011 : 6:55 a.m.

Interestingly enough, whenever you really might need to use your CPL you can't (walking home from a bar after maybe having one drink/schools/sports arenas). It makes sense, you don't want a drunk citizen showing off his/her gun at the bar or pulling it out in a bar fight. On the other hand, when you're walking home from a bar/party you are unable to use that gun for protection and are vulnerable.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 6:20 p.m.

Oh here is the link: <a href=",1607,7-123-1591_3503_4654---,00.html" rel='nofollow'>,1607,7-123-1591_3503_4654---,00.html</a> I am not commenting in any way on if the victim was drunk or had been drinking. I just want to point out in these late night situations, usually people are out with friends at parties, concerts, bars or any other place, and the Michigan rule basically dose not permit you to have even one drink if you have your gun. I am not commenting on the gun being an effective deterrent, just that state law definetley prohibits you from carrying it, so carrying a gun (under the law) would only work for people that are going out and not having even a drink, or weren't going to one of the banned places.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 6:12 p.m.

Answered my own question Carrying Under the Influence An individual licensed to carry a concealed pistol shall not possess a concealed pistol on their person or motor vehicle while they have any bodily alcohol content (.02 bodily alcohol content [BAC] or above) or a controlled substance.* and Pistol Free Areas Individuals licensed to carry a concealed pistol by Michigan or another state are prohibited from carrying a concealed pistol on the following premises: Schools or school property but may carry while in a vehicle on school property while dropping off or picking up if a parent or legal guardian Public or private day care center, public or private child caring agency, or public or private child placing agency. Sports arena or stadium A tavern where the primary source of income is the sale of alcoholic liquor by the glass consumed on the premises Any property or facility owned or operated by a church, synagogue, mosque, temple, or other place of worship, unless the presiding official allows concealed weapons An entertainment facility that the individual knows or should know has a seating capacity of 2,500 or more A hospital A dormitory or classroom of a community college, college, or university A Casino


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 5:35 p.m.

I think most of these situations have taken place at night. Even with a permit are you allowed to carry your weapon after consuming alcohol, and are they allowed in establishments that serve alcohol?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:04 p.m.

This is about taking responsibility for ones own safety. As jjc155 put it, you cannot have a law enforcement officer on every corner. I think people in Ann Arbor have a false sense of security. There is crime here, like everywhere else in the world. It is up to the individual to be alert and prepared. If some people feel more comfortable with a firearm, and are taking the time to train themselves properly, that is their choice. If others choose self-defense classes, pepper spray, tazers, and so forth, that is their choice as well. What they all have in common is the idea that they alone are responsible for their own safety. I know, a novel idea in this day and age where everyone is looking to blame someone else. If this perpetrator is the same individual that has been fondling and grabbing women on the street, he has escalated to rape and since he is increasing his violence toward women, we should consider he may escalate to murder. This is not a firearm vs police issue, this is a time we should be educated the young women in our town. Informing them it is not safe to be out alone. Help them institute a buddy system. I believe there is a service at UofM that will walk students home if it is late or if they are afraid. We have a $3 taxi service here in Ann Arbor for senior citizens, why not something like that for students. We know the kids are going to be out late, visiting friends, dancing etc, that makes them easy prey. Whether we like it or not, our town is no longer safe, and instead of blaming the police, let us work together with them to circumvent further violence. We can choose to let this &quot;serial rapist&quot; can be a catalyst for change in our town.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:02 p.m.

There is no guarantee with any situation. I could become a victim just as easy as anyone else. What I don't want to have happen is witnessing/experiencing a situation that had I had my firearm the innocent life of someone else or myself could have been saved. Immediate and strong resistance can completely change the outcome of an attack. An attack can happen to anyone, anytime and anywhere familiar or not.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:02 p.m.

Third, the idea that police officers (and I mean this with the utmost respect for the profession having worked in and knowing many officers) are extremely well versed in the use of their firearms and therefore we have no need to carry is ridiculous. I can not tell you how many officers I've seen and heard of that have to repeat firearms certifications because they failed their first/second/third go at it. This yearly/bi-yearly qualification is also at a paper target with controlled shooting in a comparatively stress-free environment. That being said a majority of officers will pass at their first attempt but again it is a comparatively stress-free environment. You add the variables of night/day, weather, location, distance, noise, radio chatter, situational awareness, physical exertion, moving "target", nearby bystanders, background, etc and at that point even the most "experienced officer" is in a world of unknowns. Again I am in no way saying you shouldn't trust the police, what I'm saying is that trying to relate an officer's ability/inability to be act should have no effect on someone's decision to carry. The decision to carry should be made by that individual based on their experience, training, comfort, willingness to do so and ability to act should the situation call for it. Each of us has a different idea of how we would react given a situation. Some would try to run, scream, slap, spray or fight. Regardless of what we think we would do that outcome is always unknown. You have to weight the risk/benefit of anything you do. Deciding to drive to work is a risk I'm willing to take to get paid. Choosing to go out without my firearm is a risk I'm often not willing to take in an attempt to avoid being a victim.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:01 p.m.

Several good points have been made so far. Other points are obviously derived from flawed perceptions of what really happens out there. First, the 2nd amendment was NOT created to protect the US from foreign enemies. The bill of rights (if you remember from history class includes the 2nd amendment) was created to protect the People (us) from the US Government (not foreign enemies). Second the point has been made that many people already do carry concealed around the Ann Arbor area. Many MANY thousands of permits have been issued in Washtenaw County alone. This doesn't include people from out of county/state that also carry in this area. You pass and interact with these people on a daily basis and don't even know it. That being said how many times have you had someone shoot at you, or your friends, or your family, or anyone you've heard of in the area because they tried to take their parking space or "overreacted"? The gun crimes you've read about in the area recently are committed by CRIMINALS. Not education/trained individuals with CPL permits. Permits and "invisible gun free zones" only stop the law-abiding citizens from carrying in those areas/situations. Those areas are what some like to call "criminal empowerment zones". Criminals know most law abiding citizens will not have any weapons on them in those areas for fear they'll get a ticket or arrested if they do.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 12:43 p.m.

just like Robert Heinlein said &quot; An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his actions with his life.&quot; Just remember the USSC has ruled that the police have NO duty to protect. Lastly for those who are trying to tie this to a lack of police at AAPD lest we forget the &quot;serial rapist&quot; that worked the AA area back in the early 1990's (close to twice the number of AA cops back then compared to now). <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> If &quot;serial crimes&quot; (rape, murder etc) had ANYTHING to do with the number of cops on the job, well then there would not be serial crimes in New York (34,500 officers) Chicago (13,400 officers) or LA (9830 ofifcers). Cant be a cop on every corner, every dark alley, every parking structure etc all the time, which is what it would take to effect serial crimes by police presences.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 11:15 a.m.

So since police can't defend from surprise attacks then they shouldn't carry guns either...really? So once you fight like heck amd get away the assailant might not chase you? If you make enough space to draw a weapon, do you think that just might be a deterence?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 5:46 a.m.

A Detroit police officer with a second job that puts him regularly in dangerous situations spoke to our office one day. He said that women (and men) encountering the public, even in very well orchestrated pre-planned situations with every precaution taken and every action pre-deliberated, CANNOT possibly use a firearm to overcome a surprise attack. The best we can do is fight like crazy to get away, make lots of noise to draw attention, and be prepared to jump through plate glass windows if necessary. Police officers get lots of training and use what they have learned, and it still takes them time to master it, with plenty of adrenaline-pumping real life episodes to put notches in their holsters. They still sometimes get it wrong and end up dead too. What does a citizen stand to gain by thinking that their concealed weapon is going to save them if that is true? And I believe it IS true. Concealed weapons are false security, but for those who want them and get them legally, go for it. I'll try not to say I told you so.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 3:05 a.m.

@John B. Knot-Thank you for the history lesson. I have been shooting trap, skeet and target since I was 10, to me it has always been a sport. Intention is everything I suppose. People who wish to do harm will always find a way and a weapon, from a pen, vehicle, pill or firearm, it is human nature I suppose. @Steve-whether to carry or not is a personal issue. I like having the right to do so. and as Ricebrnr eloquently put it, The right to bear arms has nothing to do with foreign invasions. I do not understand how you can say I am misinformed to think I can properly use a firearm. Blanket generalizations lead to misinformation and fear. I agree a well funded police force is definitely a first choice, but crime will always continue if people are seen as victims by the assailants. If a rapist knows there is a high likelihood a woman walking alone is carrying a firearm he would most likely leave her alone.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:38 a.m.

&quot;A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.&quot; sorry missed the part about foreign enemies... yah gun crimes are down in Europe, how about other violent crimes? UP, why because criminals know average people can't easily defend themselves. And I agree thank goodness you don't carry because you don't carry to defend your car. You carry to defend your life and those of your loved ones. On rare occasions perhaps even the life of a stranger.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:34 a.m.

I thought you couldn't carry on campus... ?


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:25 a.m.

@ A2MOMof5 I'm happy to say that I'm an excellent shot. I have multiple firearms and I have been shooting since I was 14. That said, I believe a well funded police force is, on the whole, better for society. I don't want the stress of having to carry firearm on my hip because someone likes my car. I do carry a knife and I'm sad to say it was presented to end an altercation in this town. I've also lived in Europe and there are far fewer gun crimes. I'll gladly pay another $100 in taxes each year for the privilege. We need fewer guns in this country. The 2nd amendment was written to protect us from foreign enemies. I don't see that happening any time soon. If you have guns, keep them at home. If you think you're properly trained to use them you're are misinformed.

John B. Knot

Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:24 a.m.

A2mom: I agree with most of what you say except for one thing: a firearm IS designed to kill. Firearms were not designed for hobbyists to target shoot nor were they designed for self defense against would be assailants. Firearms origanated in 12th century China as offensive weapons to be use in warfare.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:19 a.m.

Michelle09: You seemed to miss the part of my statement where I indicated Education, Training and regular practice. There are rules and regulations one must follow in order to get a permit to carry. Those that are eligible have that privileged. You would be shocked and surprised how many people are already walking around armed. It is way more than a &quot;few&quot;. Like any sport the more a person practices and takes it seriously the better they will be at handling various situations. Self defense means you have to get close enough to the perpetrator to inflict physical harm, and that is extremely dangerous. One must always assume an attacker has a weapon, and therefore keep their body as far away from the attacker as possible. I still say a firearm is the best tool for the job.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:11 a.m.

Citizens of Kennesaw GA disagree with you. For the last 2 and a half decades.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:08 a.m.

I agree it is every citizen's duty to be aware of their surroundings and to utilize common sense (i.e. walking in groups after dark, letting someone know where they are going to be, etc.). However, everyone should not be walking around armed! Even with proper training, a lot of people react to situations out of sheer paranoia, and off of their emotions. People should just use precaution in all situations and be aware that their are a lot of psycho predators out there! Take some self defense classes, or heck, get a can of pepper spray. If you are one of the few that can properly use a firearm to protect themselves, then go for it. But advertising that all citizens should carry a firearm is not the best route to go when trying to create a safer community.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:08 a.m.

Oh and btw YOUR trust issues should not have a bearing on other people's freedoms. Driving or otherwise


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:08 a.m.

Steve- you already live in that society. There are many people right here in Ann Arbor that have permits to carry a concealed firearm. You would be very surprised how many University of Michigan students have carry permits. A firearm is not &quot;designed&quot; to kill. I have been shooting all my life and never used it as a weapon. But am very glad I am capable and knowledgeable about doing so if the need arose. Educated and trained firearm users are the safest people to be around. I was trained never to point a gun at someone unless I intended to shoot them, and if I made the decision to shoot someone I must be prepared to make the decision to kill them. When trained properly this becomes a serious decision that is never made lightly. The increase in armed bank robberies here in Ann Arbor and neighboring towns is a vivid example that crooks will always get illegal firearms. The folks with the registered guns, those who carry permits and are educated and trained are not the problem. They are the solution.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 2:01 a.m.

How many of those average citizens driving around had a background check? Plus your motor vehicle kills more average people per year than your &quot;machine design to kill&quot; Get real.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 1:45 a.m.

I don't trust the average citizen to operate a motor vehicle designed for transport, nevermind a machine designed to kill. Your logic may seem complete at first but do you really want to everyone on the street to be carrying lethal weapon? Every person on the road packing heat during rush hour or fighting for parking spots? There are too many people who don't think before they act. That is not the kind of society I want to live in.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : midnight

We all need to be more aware of our surroundings. Even after there's an arrest. Heads up ladies.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 4:06 a.m.

Last time I checked guys get attacked too.


Wed, Jul 20, 2011 : 3:41 a.m.

not just ladies.... haven't the 'group attacks' that have happened in the South U and Greenwood areas been on young men? Even when there were two guys walking together. Be aware of your surroundings at all times no matter who you are or who you're with. Look around frequently, expect the unexpected....