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Man Pleads Not Guilty To Rape Attempt, Beating At Beach

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Joseph Mbatchou

Joseph Mbatchou is charged with attacking a woman and trying to sexually assault her in a restroom at the Foster Avenue Beach. (Credit: Chicago Police Department)

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CHICAGO (STMW) – A man accused of beating and trying to rape a woman in a Foster Avenue Beach bathroom — a crime stopped by a man who came to the screaming victim’s aid — pleaded not guilty to the charges against him on Tuesday.

Joseph Mbatchou, 29, of 941 W. Lawrence Ave. in Uptown, who is being held on $500,000 bond, was indicted on charges of attempted criminal sexual assault and misdemeanor battery on Oct. 12, Cook County State’s Attorney’s office spokesman Andy Conklin said.

On Tuesday, Mbatchou pleaded not guilty to the charges and a status hearing was set for Nov. 30, Conklin said.

“She wouldn’t f— me, so I beat her ass,” Mbatchou told police upon his arrest on Sept. 28, Asst. Cook County State’s Atty. Pamela Stratigakis said during bond proceedings.

The 37-year-old victim, who had been walking along the beach in the 5200 block of North Lake Shore Drive about noon that day, felt someone tap her on the shoulder when she was washing her hands at a beachhouse restroom, Stratigakis said.

When she turned around, Mbatchou allegedly punched her repeatedly in the face, then slammed her head and face against a concrete wall when she tried to fight back by kicking him in the groin and scratching his face, authorities said.

He then dragged her into a bathroom stall and pushed her down on the toilet as he began to undo his pants and tried to pull off her shorts, Stratigakis said.

A man walking outside heard her cries for help and ran into the bathroom, successfully separating the woman from Mbatchou, Stratigakis said.

Mbatchou allegedly punched the Good Samaritan before walking out of the bathroom and telling onlookers, “I’m FBI.” Some of those witnesses saw Mbatchou fighting with the man and called 911.

The victim, who identified the married Mbatchou in a lineup, had to have five stitches above her left eye. She also suffered contusions to her face, head and body, Stratigakis said.

Mbatchou works at a homeless shelter and has a daughter, according to an assistant public defender.

He was sentenced to four years in prison for residential burglary in 2007, but spent only about a year in the Dixon Correctional Center before being paroled in July 2008, according to the Department of Correction’s website. He was discharged from parole on July 5, 2010.

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