Man charged with groping women at Loop CTA station told police in 2017 he had done the same thing to 75 women

David Buckner in June 2022. | CPD; File

Five years ago, after prosecutors charged David Buckner with molesting four women on Chicago public transit, he reportedly told police that he had “probably” done the same thing to 75 women on the CTA in the previous two months.

Buckner was eventually found not guilty by reason of insanity, but a judge did order him to register as a sex offender.

In July, two women accused him of molesting them on the Magnificent Mile, according to court records. The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office refused to charge him with a felony, CPD officers noted in their report.

And, over the weekend, while still on bail for the Mag Mile cases, he was arrested again after two more women accused him of inappropriately touching them at the Roosevelt CTA station, Chicago police said.

Within hours of his arrest on Sunday, Buckner walked out of the Central (1st) District police station on his own recognizance, charged with misdemeanor battery.

75 women

In July 2017, prosecutors filed several felony charges against Buckner, including criminal sexual abuse by force, aggravated battery, and unlawful restraint, for allegedly groping and grabbing four women during a string of incidents on the CTA.

Prosecutors said he “admitted to ‘probably’ molesting about 75 women on the CTA in the past two months,” the Chicago Tribune reported at the time.

Authorities accused him of grabbing an 18-year-old in a bear hug, grabbing her buttocks, and kissing her on the forehead at a CTA bus stop in Wicker Park.

A month later, he allegedly committed a nearly identical attack on a 23-year-old woman at the Garfield Green Line station. Prosecutors said he told her he was entitled to date teenage girls because he was “royalty.”

A few hours later, he tried to hug, then grabbed a 29-year-old woman at the Damen Blue Line station. And, a few days later, he grabbed a 21-year-old woman’s buttocks and breasts, then licked and kissed her face after she refused to hug him near the Damen Blue Line station, prosecutors said.

Records show that Cook County Judge Dennis Porter ordered Buckner into a secure state-run treatment center about a year later. Porter found Buckner not guilty by reason of insanity on May 8, 2019. He was released on December 29, 2020.

In the weeks before the 2017 felony charges were filed, Buckner was charged three times with misdemeanor battery and disorderly conduct charges for inappropriate behavior toward women in the Loop. Prosecutors dropped all of the cases, but court records don’t explain why.

Sex offender

Chicago police arrested Buckner in the Loop about a week before Thanksgiving last year because he was allegedly not in compliance with the state’s sex offender registration requirements.

During a bail hearing the next day, prosecutors said he was required to register due to the 2017 cases in which he was found not guilty by reason of insanity.

Judge Maryam Ahmad released Buckner on his own recognizance, and he brought himself into compliance. Prosecutors dropped the charge later that month.

Two more women, misdemeanor charges

Two more women accused Buckner of assaulting them after Chicago police responded to reports of a sexual assault in the 500 block of North Michigan shortly after noon on June 9.

One woman said Buckner grabbed her from behind, grabbed her butt, and kissed her neck. Prosecutors said she pushed him away, and he tried to grab her breasts. Another woman intervened and Buckner allegedly wrapped her in a bear hug, finally releasing her as she screamed.

Cops arrested Buckner about a block away and sought felony criminal sexual abuse charges against him, according to CPD records. But, a Cook County assistant state’s attorney rejected felony charges, saying the allegations didn’t rise to that level, records show.

Buckner appeared in misdemeanor bond court the next day. The prosecutor who presented the allegations against him did not tell Judge Susana Ortiz about Buckner’s 2017 case or his sex offender status. His public defender highlighted Buckner’s lack of criminal background.

Buckner went home by posting a $500 bail deposit two days later. The charges are still pending.

Two more women, more misdemeanors

Chicago police arrested Buckner again at 12:05 p.m. Sunday.

Two women, ages 25 and 39, reported that he touched them inappropriately while they stood on a platform at the Roosevelt CTA station, according to police.

Buckner was charged with two counts of misdemeanor battery and walked out of the police station a few hours later on his own recognizance, according to CPD.

Records that would show if CPD sought felony charges against Buckner on Sunday were not immediately available due to the Columbus Day holiday.

CWBChicago will monitor Buckner’s court cases for our readers.

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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. Our editorial email address is news@cwbchicago.com