Man guilty of assault on campus

By Riley Swinford

A man charged with sexually assaulting a student on campus in May 2011 was found guilty Wednesday.

Jamal Patrick Jones Jr., 21, was convicted by a Jackson County jury on two counts of aggravated sexual assault — a Class X felony — and faces up to 60 years in prison. Jones’ trial with the jury began Monday, and the verdict was reached at around 5 p.m. Wednesday, according to court records. His sentence hearing is scheduled for Oct. 11 at the Jackson County Courthouse in Murphysboro.

The Jackson County State Attorney’s Office issued a warrant for Jones’ arrest in May 2011 and Jones, who was a Rend Lake College student at the time, was arrested in Philadelphia in June 2011 in connection with the May 8 assault of a 19-year-old student in Faner Hall’s breezeway.


He was held in custody in Philadelphia before being transferred by a state deputy to the Jackson County Jail where he awaited his trial.

Jones assaulted the student, who was walking from the 800 block of East Park Street, between 3 and 3:15 a.m., and the student reported being followed as she entered the breezeway, according to a report from the SIU Department of Public Safety. The area’s surveillance cameras captured the incident as well as Jones fleeing to the Brush Towers area.

The victim was able to escape to the parking lot west of Lawson Hall, where she flagged down a police officer.  She was taken to Memorial Hospital of Carbondale for treatment, according to the DPS report.