New details emerge in Lincoln Park sexual abuse cases

Hunter Best (inset) and surveillance images of a man that police called a “person of interest.” | CPD

One year after an Indianapolis man was charged with entering two Lincoln Park homes and sexually abusing girls who were asleep inside, new details of the alleged crimes have emerged.

Prosecutors laid out their allegations against 26-year-old Hunter Best in a motion to admit evidence of other crimes at trial. Should the cases go to trial, prosecutors want jurors to hear about both incidents.

According to the filing by Assistant State’s Attorney Mary Innes, Best entered a home in the 400 block of West Belden at 2:30 a.m. on May 27, 2018, and went to 13-year-old girl’s bedroom. The girl woke up and Best remained in the room for about fifteen minutes, kissing the girl and rubbing her shoulders, Innes said. Best allegedly stayed in the room even though the girl was pleading with him to leave her alone.

He eventually left and went to her father’s bedroom where the man awoke to find Best standing over him, watching him sleep, according to the filing. The father escorted Best out of the house before learning about what had allegedly happened to his daughter.

Prosecutors said an empty beer can and a cigarette were found in the family’s kitchen. DNA testing showed that Best “cannot be excluded” from contributing genetic material recovered from the items. Experts concluded that one out of 6.5 quintillion unrelated individuals would have the same DNA profile as that taken from the can and cigarette, according to the state.

On the same night, an 11-year-old girl was sleeping on a couch at her grandfather’s house on the 500 block of West Grant when she woke up to find a strange man standing above her around 2:20 a.m., the state alleges.

That girl told investigators that the man kissed her on the lips and touched her private areas. The girl’s grandfather was awakened by the girl’s crying and whimpering, Innes wrote. When the grandfather went to check on the girl, he saw a silhouette move across the room and found his front door open.

None of the alleged victims or their relatives knew Best, prosecutors said.

During their investigation, police released surveillance images and videos of a man that they described as a “person of interest” in the case.

When Best was arrested one month later local Alderman Michele Smith (43rd) said, “the videos obtained from the community proved crucial to the apprehension of this offender.”

Best, who is being held without bail, is due back in court on September 19th.

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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets.