Four suspects in custody for campus battery

By Luke Nozicka

The SIU Department of Public Safety has identified all six suspects, four of whom are in custody, in the battery of a former student near the Agriculture Building on Sept. 30, the student said.

Chris Hooks, a 26-year-old alumnus who was attacked while walking toward the library about 9:30 p.m., said DPS is searching for the other two. At least two of the arrested suspects are not affiliated with the university, according to an SIU Alert released Oct. 1.

Hooks, of St. Elmo, said he was punched three to four times before falling to the ground on the sidewalk in between the Agriculture Building and Thompson Woods. He said when he fought back, the attackers, who he didn’t know, fled into Thompson Woods.


Hooks, who has a bachelor of economics, a bachelor of marketing and a master of economics from the university, said the incident lasted about 30 seconds.

“I had gotten a phone call and 20 seconds later I hear a ‘skip, skip, skip’ come running up behind me, so I look over my right shoulder and I see this dude running up behind me and he just jumps up, spins and unloads in my face,” Hooks said in an interview Oct. 2. “I think I blacked out for a second.”

DPS is working to build the case with the State’s Attorney’s Office, according to an email from Hooks on Wednesday. They are preparing for a jury trial, he wrote.