A man who has a history of attacking passers-by and transit workers allegedly stabbed a 66-year-old man five times near Union Station late last month. But he is only charged with one count of misdemeanor battery, even though a CPD report says the victim wanted to pursue felony charges.
The story was brought to our attention yesterday after we reported that a woman who only received misdemeanor probation for stabbing a CTA worker in the neck was arrested over the weekend when she allegedly brandished a knife and stole a purse from a wedding party in Millennium Park. She was only charged with misdemeanors. Again.
Stabbed five times
According to a CPD report, police responded to a “person stabbed” call on the 400 block of West Jackson around 9:30 p.m. on September 28.
When they arrived, they met with Amtrak police officers who said they saw Leonard Hall, 51, running away from a 66-year-old man who was lying on the ground with multiple stab wounds. Amtrak cops detained Hall and recovered a bloody knife before Chicago officers arrived, the report said.
Hall told Amtrak police that he stabbed the victim, according to court records.
The victim was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital with three stab wounds to his forehead, one to his left flank, and another to his left ear, the CPD report said. Doctors used stitches and staples to close him back up.
Chicago officers noted in their report that the victim specifically wanted to pursue felony charges against Hall.
But prosecutors did not approve any felonies.
Instead, Hall is charged only with one count of misdemeanor battery. He was released from the police station on his own recognizance the next afternoon, according to CPD records.
Hall has a history of random attacks.
In June, he was arrested after he allegedly assaulted a 39-year-old man near Lincoln Park Zoo, punched him in the face three times, then threw his phone into a nearby lagoon.
Police later considered pursuing hate crime charges against Hall, but officers could not reach the victim because his phone was in the lagoon, according to a CPD report.
Instead, Hall was charged with two misdemeanor counts. He walked out of the police station less than four hours after he was arrested, records show.
In 2019, Hall was sentenced to 45 months in prison for attacking a CTA bus driver without provocation near Union Station.
The driver told police he was returning from break and invited Hall to get onto his bus to take the #151. Hall put the driver into a headlock and tried to punch him in the face before taking him to the ground, a police report said. The CTA driver gained control of Hall until Amtrak police arrived to put him into custody.
The driver told police he had never seen Hall before in his life, and he had no idea why Hall attacked him.
Hall and the woman who received misdemeanor probation for stabbing a CTA worker in July aren’t the only people skating by with minor charges after police arrest them for violent attacks.
Earlier this month, 32-year-old Gary Coleman received eight months conditional discharge for misdemeanor battery three days after Coleman knocked a 60-year-old woman unconscious on a Loop sidewalk. No felony charges were ever filed. The sentence was handed down just three days after the attack.
One day after Judge Gerardo Tristan Jr. released Coleman on conditional discharge, Coleman attacked and seriously injured a 66-year-old woman in town for the Chicago marathon. The woman suffered head and wrist injuries after she was thrown or fell from the Cermak Red Line platform during the attack, prosecutors said.
Coleman is now held without bail.
Update January 28, 2022: Prosecutors have dropped all charges against Leonard Hall, according to court records.