A man who has a history of allegations of randomly attacking people is accused of randomly attacking four women in the Loop on Tuesday afternoon. He is also charged with trying to rob two of the victims.
William Livingston, 28, is charged with four counts of felony aggravated battery in a public place, two counts of attempted robbery, and one count of misdemeanor battery.
The string of assaults began around noon on the 700 block of South State when Livingston tugged on a 30-year-old woman’s backpack as she prepared to cross the street, according to police and prosecutors.
When the woman turned around, Livingston allegedly punched her in the face, causing her to fall to the ground.
A few minutes later, Livingston punched a 25-year-old woman in the jaw as she smoked near Wabash and Van Buren, causing her headphones to fall to the ground, prosecutors and police said. He reportedly picked up her headphones but gave them back after she gave him her cigarette.
According to the allegations, the woman called 911 and followed Livingston to Wabash and Jackson where she saw the third attack unfold. As she watched, Livingston reached into a 25-year-old woman’s coat pocket and then punched the victim in the face three times, prosecutors said.
She fell to the ground, and Livingston allegedly walked away. DePaul University said in a public safety bulletin that the victim is a student at the school.
While the second victim stopped to help the third victim, Livingston pulled a hat off a 27-year-old woman’s head near Wabash and Monroe, then punched her in the neck and face when she yelled for him to give it back, according to prosecutors. He then allegedly spat on a 49-year-old woman who witnessed the incident.
Police officers arrested Livingston near State and Monroe around 12:30 p.m., and the victims and witnesses identified him as the attacker, prosecutors said.
Livingston’s public defender said he recently started a new job at a temp agency.
Judge Barbara Dawkins set his bail at $15,000. He must post a 10% deposit to go home on electronic monitoring under Dawkins’ order.
In 2017, Livingston was accused of randomly attacking two women in separate attacks months apart, including a Columbia College student who was leaving school in the Loop, according to court records. Both cases were dropped.
The 20-year-old Columbia student told police she was leaving a school building as Livingston approached on the 1100 block of South Wabash on April 26, 2017, a CPD report said. She told officers she thought Livingston would walk past her, but he instead punched her in the face, the woman alleged.
Cops arrested Livingston nearby, and he was charged with simple battery. Then, he went missing until police picked him up on a warrant in the case a few weeks later.
While he was in the police station holding cell, Livingston grabbed a lock-up attendant by the chest and kicked him in the groin, police alleged. He was charged with simple battery for the attack.
According to court records, prosecutors dropped charges in the Columbia student attack 12 days later when she failed to show up in court. They also dropped charges in the lock-up incident.
A few months later, on December 16, 2017, Livingston repeatedly punched a 29-year-old woman in the face, struck her in the stomach, and kicked her in the leg several times near the 95th Street Red Line station, according to allegations in another CPD report.
The alleged attack, which reportedly came without warning, resulted in another misdemeanor battery charge. Prosecutors dropped the case ten months later, court records show.
Before they did, Livingston was arrested again in the Loop. This time he allegedly went behind the security desk of an apartment building on the 1000 block of South State and stole two cellphones.
Cops arrested him nearby. Officers alleged that he spat in one cop’s face before they took him in. He allegedly spat in another cop’s eye at the station.
Livingston pleaded guilty to burglary and aggravated battery of a peace officer and received a sentence of 24 months probation from Judge Michael McHale.