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  1. #1
    Pedro56's Avatar
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    Man linked to 6 more rapes


    Charged in 4 already; police found DNA in '02


    February 10, 2007
    BY ANNIE SWEENEY Crime Reporter

    A Chicago man who was arrested and charged last week with four rapes has now been linked to six additional attacks, Chicago Police said Friday.

    James Earl Hampton, 32, allegedly attacked women and girls -- ranging from age 32 to age 12 -- between 1999 and 2005.

    The Illinois State Police crime lab started linking DNA evidence collected from victims to one unknown offender -- known only as No. 231 -- in 2002. Detectives were able to track him down through vehicle registrations and cell records based on witness reports from the last attack in August 2005, said Chief of Detectives Maria Maher.

    "These are the kinds of cases that can frustrate investigators to the core. However, no one gave up hope that this man would be found," Maher said.

    Wentworth Area Detective Arlen Pietrowski was assigned the case in August 2005 after a 12-year-old girl was raped. Pietrowski got good witness descriptions of the car Hampton was driving when he allegedly persuaded the 12-year-old girl to come with him so he could buy her new shoes, Maher said.

    Tracked his car, cell phone
    Hampton allegedly first took the girl to a house where he got his hair braided and then to a hotel in the 400 block of east Pershing Road, where he assaulted her for several hours.

    Armed with the car description, Pietrowski checked logs at the hotel and came up with a list of vehicles. He then had to track down vehicle owners.

    He finally found a woman in southern Illinois who knew Hampton and who led police to Hampton's cell phone. Eventually, detectives tracked Hampton through his cell phone to a restaurant in the 700 block of West 54th Street on Feb. 7 and arrested him there, Maher said.

    Hampton was ordered held without bond Thursday in Cook County court after being charged in four of the rapes. Charges are pending in the six other attacks, Maher said.

    asweeney@suntimes.com
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