Prosecutors: Woman Allegedly Attacked By Fire Official Went To Him For Help
Updated 01/08/13 – 5:33 p.m.
CHICAGO (CBS) — The woman who allegedly was attacked by a former suburban fire official went to him for help afterward, not knowing he was the one who broke into her home wearing a ski mask, and put a knife to her throat, prosecutors said Tuesday.
WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports new details about the attack emerged as prosecutors tried unsuccessfully to have former Chicago Ridge Deputy Fire Chief Gary Swiercz’s bond increased on Tuesday, a day after he was released from custody and placed on house arrest.
Prosecutors said Swiercz wore black eye makeup and a ski mask to hide his identity when he broke into a neighbor’s condo, and attacked her while she slept over the weekend.
According to court documents, Swiercz put a knife to the victim’s throat and she fought back, and allegedly told her, “don’t scream, or I will cut your throat.”
Swiercz allegedly told police he had a moment of clarity as he was slamming the victim’s head on the floor.
“I realized I was a public servant and shouldn’t be doing this,” Swiercz allegedly told investigators. He said he stopped and ran out of the victim’s condo at that point.
The victim – who said she has no relationship with Swiercz – told police he smelled like booze.
After the attack, the woman told police she went to Swiercz’s home for help, knowing he was a firefighter and believing he could help her, but unaware he would be the one police would later arrest for the attack.
Swiercz’s door was open when she arrived at his home, and he was not there. He was arrested a short time later in the parking lot.
Swiercz, who resigned his position on Monday, has been charged with attempted murder, home invasion, aggravated unlawful restraint, aggravated attempted criminal sexual assault, and residential burglary.
His bail was set at $150,000 on Sunday, and he was released from jail on Monday. He volunteered to stay at his parents’ home in south suburban Worth, where he’ll be placed on house arrest.
He’s also been ordered to stay away from the victim, her home, her job, and her church. He’s also not allowed to own or possess a gun or any other dangerous weapon.
Swiercz has no criminal history.
Police said Swiercz broke into the condo of a female neighbor in the 8100 block of 168th Place in Tinley Park early Saturday morning.
He allegedly was armed with a knife and wearing a ski mask. Prosecutors said he also was carrying a sex toy and lubricant.
Swiercz allegedly forced the woman who lived there to the floor and beat her. Prosecutors said Swiercz put his hands over the woman’s mouth and put a 3-inch blade to her throat.
He allegedly held the woman’s hands together, led her from the living room to the kitchen, and forced her up against a cabinet as she was screaming.
Prosecutors said he threw the woman to the ground, and slammed her head on the tiled kitchen floor three times.
The victim suffered a swollen lip and a knot on the back of her head.