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Mother recognizes son charged with sex assault when photo released by police

Surveillance photos of a man wanted for sexually assaulting and robbing a woman at gunpoint June 9 in the 10100 block of South Parnell. | Chicago Police

A man wanted for sexually assaulting a woman at gunpoint earlier this month in the Far South Side Fernwood neighborhood turned himself in after his mother recognized him in a surveillance photo released by police on Wednesday, according to Cook County prosecutors.

Michael Eldridge, 18, is charged with aggravated criminal sexual assault with a weapon, aggravated vehicular hijacking with a firearm, aggravated armed kidnapping and unlawful vehicular invasion, according to a statement from Chicago Police.

He was denied bail when he appeared at a hearing on the charges Thursday at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse.

Michael Eldridge | Chicago Police
Michael Eldridge | Chicago Police

About 11:20 p.m. June 9, Eldridge approached the woman’s car from behind along the driver’s side as she was parked in the area of Parnell Avenue and 101st Street, according to police and prosecutors.

He held a revolver to the 21-year-old’s head and demanded her property, Assistant State’s Attorney Jacqueline Marquardt said. She gave him her iPhone, LINK card and $5. He then walked to the passenger side door, got in and pushed the gun into her ribs.

Eldridge forced the woman to drive to a secluded area and sexually assaulted her, authorities said. She reported the attack and was taken to a hospital.

Eldridge used the woman’s LINK card at a gas station and was recorded by video surveillance, Marquardt said. A still image taken from the surveillance video was released by police Wednesday morning.

Eldridge’s mother recognized him when the photo appeared on a TV news report, Marquardt said. He turned himself in about 8 p.m. at the Morgan Park Police District, 1900 W. Monterey, police said.

He was further identified by the woman in a police line-up, prosecutors said.

Eldridge, who lives in Roseland, was scheduled to return to court July 7.