Friday, June 5, 2015 || Originally Published: Wednesday Journal || By Tim Inklebarger
The Oak Park Police Department is searching for Mark Barnes, a 43-year-old convicted felon suspected of committing a home invasion on May 21 in the 1000 block of South Oak Park Avenue.
Police obtained a warrant for Barnes’ arrest late Thursday after collecting evidence linking him to the home invasion, in which a man allegedly forced his way in to a residence, assaulted a 27-year-old Chicago woman, bound her and stole $25 in cash.
Barnes is an African-American man about 6-feet, 1-inch tall and weighing 190 pounds. Police reported that Barnes was convicted of criminal sexual assault with a firearm in 1997. He also was convicted of armed aggravated kidnapping, according to the Illinois Sex Offender registry.
He was released from the Illinois Department of Corrections in April.
His current address is unknown, but he most recently lived at 1051 First Ave. in Maywood, according to the Illinois Sex Offender registry. The registry notes that Barnes “has failed to maintain accurate registration records as required by law.”
“Solving this crime is a priority,” Oak Park Police Chief Rick Tanksley said in the news release. “Fundamental investigation techniques and patience have given us a solid suspect. Now, we need to find and bring him in to ensure that no one has to endure the trauma of such a crime at his hands.
“We are urging anyone with information on the suspect to call the police. Concerned, involved citizens willing to pick up the phone and share information may be essential in aiding us in apprehending this individual. We hope that word will get out and someone will step forward with the tip we need to bring him in.”
The victim told police that she was housesitting for a coworker when the man knocked on the front door. He asked for a name the woman did not recognize and then left. He returned, tried to engage her in conversation and then pushed his way into the residence and displayed a handgun.
He assaulted her and tied her up, according to a police report. The woman was able to free herself and call the police. She was taken to Rush Oak Park Hospital and was treated and released.
Anyone with information can reach the Oak Park Police Department at 708-383-3800, and anonymous tips can be made at 708-434-1636 or online here. VFP
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