DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin announced that on Jan. 25, 2024, a jury found a homeless man guilty of sexually assaulting a woman near the Illinois Prairie Path in 2018. The jury returned their verdict against Robert Davison, 44 (d.o.b. 9/16/1979) following a three-day trial in front of Judge Margaret O’Connell and approximately two-and-one-half hours of deliberations.
In all, the jury found Davison guilty of 12 counts of Aggravated Criminal Sexual Assault, a Class X Felony and one count of Unlawful Restraint, a Class 4 Felony. On May 21, 2018, Davison appeared in Bond Court where his bond was set at $750,000 with 10% to apply. He has remained in custody at the DuPage County Jail since that time.
On May 18, 2018, at approximately 12:30 a.m., the Wheaton Police Department was notified of someone screaming for help near the PADS Shelter in Wheaton. Upon their arrival, officers found the victim with dirt on her face and scratches and cuts to her upper body.
Through the course of their investigation, authorities learned that at approximately 12:30 a.m., Davison approached the victim near the Illinois Prairie Path and demanded sex from her. When the woman declined, Davison dragged her into a wooded area by her hair and sexually assaulted her. Following the assault, Davison fled. Wheaton Police identified Davison as a suspect in the assault, and he was taken into custody without incident two days later.
Wheaton Police Chief Princeton J. Youker expressed his sincere appreciation for everyone involved in this case.
“This conviction would not have been possible without the bravery of the survivor,” Chief Youker said. “I am extremely proud of the actions of our officers and detectives for the manner in which they serve our community. They dedicated countless hours to ensure the offender in this case was brought to justice. On a daily basis, our officers demonstrate the highest professional standards and are committed to protecting the citizens of Wheaton and holding violent predators accountable for their crimes."
“Survivors of sexual assaults face a long, difficult road to recovery,” Berlin said. “The physical and emotional damage inflicted upon them can leave survivors to suffer not only at the time of the assault, but possibly for years to come. I wish the survivor in this case the best and it is my hope that Mr. Davison’s guilty verdict will provide her some measure of solace as she moves on from this horrible assault. I thank the jury for their service during the trial as well as Judge O’Connell for ensuring a fair trial for both sides. I also thank Assistant State’s Attorneys James Scaliatine and Cathy Nusgart for their efforts in holding Mr. Davison responsible for his actions.”
Davison’s next court appearance is scheduled for March 7, 2024, for return of the Pre-Sentence Report. He faces a penalty of up to 90 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.
If you or someone you know would like additional resources regarding crisis intervention services, counseling, and advocacy for victims of sexual assault and their significant others, please visit the Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault website at www.icasa.org.