No bail for man accused of ‘terrorizing downtown’, fatally stabbing Maryland grad student
Tony Robinson was arrested Thursday in the fatal stabbing of 31-year-old Anat Kimchi last weekend in the 400 block of South Wacker Drive. He’s also charged in two other attacks on women.
A 41-year-old man accused of “terrorizing downtown” after he allegedly attacked three women, killing one, over the course of nine days this month was held without bail Saturday.
Tony Robinson is facing a first-degree murder charge in the fatal stabbing of a Maryland graduate student in the Loop last weekend, as well as armed robbery and aggravated battery charges in connection to two other downtown attacks.
“This defendant has, for lack of a better term, [been] terrorizing downtown in regards to the crimes he’s now facing charges,” Assistant State’s Attorney James Murphy said during a bond hearing.
Judge Charles Beach later agreed that Robinson had been terrorizing the downtown area, saying, “I don’t think that’s an unfair statement in any way, shape or form.”
“These types of attacks and the randomness and violence cause a fear... The randomness of this is hard to explain and it’s hard to adapt to, and frankly, it is an act of terrorism on the community when it happens in this fashion,” Beach said.
About 4 p.m. June 19, Anat Kimchi, 31, was walking in the 400 block of South Wacker Drive when Robinson approached her from behind and stabbed her in the neck and upper back, Murphy said.
A witness, who was in a nearby park at the time of the murder, told investigators that initially it looked like Robinson was trying to rob Kimchi, though he only took a sweater, Murphy said.
The witness ran to help Kimchi and had a brief confrontation with Robinson, who told the bystander “he didn’t want any of what he had,” Murphy said. The wounded Kimchi gave her phone to the witness, who called 911 and held her until emergency personnel arrived.
Kimchi, who was in town visiting friends, was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where she died.
Surveillance video captured Robinson running away southbound on Upper Wacker Drive before descending to Lower Wacker Drive, Murphy said.
Video also allegedly showed Robinson tossing a knife into the Chicago River, taking off the shirt he wore during the attack and leaving it near a small homeless encampment where he lived, about 200 feet away from the scene of the stabbing.
Investigators later found that shirt, which contained DNA samples matching Robinson, Murphy said.
Kimchi was the third woman Robinson allegedly attacked in nine days.
On June 13, Robinson allegedly jumped a St. Louis woman in town for a baseball game as she was on her way to get coffee. Robinson hit the 50-year-old woman with a “long black object” multiple times, making drop her belongings, near South Michigan Avenue and East Congress Parkway, Murphy said.
The woman didn’t see the weapon, but told investigators it felt like she was hit with a concrete block. She identified Robinson in a photo array.
Robinson stole her phone and some money before fleeing. The woman suffered a broken nose and needed nine stitches to the forehead and three staples to the back of her head, Murphy said.
And three days before that, Robinson allegedly hit a 25-year-old woman in the head with an unknown object as she walked on a sidewalk in the 500 block of South Franklin Street on June 10.
When he was arrested Thursday, Robinson was wearing the same cargo pants he allegedly was seen in after Kimchi’s stabbing.
During a search of his tent, officers recovered two knives and a black sock filled with rocks, according to Murphy. They also found black sneakers with a metal buckle on the shoe laces, the same shoes Kimchi’s attacker was seen wearing on surveillance footage before the fatal stabbing.
Robinson is due back in court Monday.