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Woman charged with attacking others in Chicago, often with bat

By Jeramie Bizzle, Adam Harrington, Asal Rezaei

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    CHICAGO (WBBM) — A Chicago woman is facing multiple charges after approaching and hitting other women, often with a bat, on the city’s Northwest Side.

Denise Solorzano, 26, was arrested on Wednesday, in the 2700 block of West Foster Avenue around 1:45 a.m. Her bond was set at $800,000 Thursday afternoon.

Solorzano was identified as the suspect who attacked 10 women between Sunday and Tuesday in the Albany Park and Irving Park areas – one of the attacks was caught on video involving a woman pushing a stroller. The ages of the victims in the series of attacks range from 19 to 33.

The first attack happened at 2:59 p.m. Sunday in the 4200 block of North Richmond Street. Police said the attacker pulled up in a white car and attacked a 33-year-old woman before fleeing.

In a proffer, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office claimed Solorzano started yelling at the woman about “beating her ass” when she pulled up in the car. Solorazano then got out of the car and punched the woman in the head and face four times, prosecutors said.

The victim fell to the ground, and Solorzano kneed her in the side – and then grabbed her by the hair and dragged her down the street, prosecutors said.

Solorzano then got back in the car and drove off, while the victim was driven to the hospital by her husband, prosecutors said. The victim had swelling to her left knee, pain and tenderness to her head, cuts to her forehead and lips, and an abrasion to her ankle, prosecutors said.

Two more women were struck Sunday at 3:46 p.m. in the 4000 block of West Lawrence Avenue. The two women – ages 19 and 31 – were near the sidewalk when the woman pulled up in the white car.

Prosecutors said Solorzano ran up to one of the women and said, “What would you do if I punched you?” The woman walked away, but Solorzano grabbed her by the hair, pulled her, and punched her three times before shoving her to the ground, prosecutors said.

The victim hit her hip, elbow, and head on the ground and briefly lost vision and other senses, prosecutors said.

Solorzano then stood over the woman and punched in the head some more – when the second woman came up to try to help, prosecutors said.

Solorzano then turned and punched the second woman in the face, prosecutors said. She then grabbed the second woman by the hair and pulled her to the ground, ripping out a chunk of her hair, prosecutors said.

Solorzano tried to punch the second woman in the face again, but the woman blocked the punch, prosecutors said. Solorzano then grabbed the woman b the hair again and tried slamming her head into the sidewalk three or four times, prosecutors said.

The woman was screaming, and someone ran to help, prosecutors said. Meanwhile, Solorzano heard police sirens, so she got in the car and drove away, prosecutors said.

An officer had seen Solorzano slam the woman’s head to the ground and drive off, prosecutors said. The officer tried to pull over Solorzano, but Solorzano did not stop – and she ran at least one stop sign, prosecutors said.

The officers did not chase Solorzano, but did take down the vehicle registration for her white sedan, prosecutors said.

The first woman Solorzano attacked on Lawrence Avenue suffered bruising to her leg, hip, head, elbow, and forehead – and had a headache, prosecutors said. The second woman had a bruised, swollen eye and nose, pain in her head, and bruising to the left side of her body.

Solorzano struck again at 11:27 a.m. Tuesday in the 4500 block of North Mozart Street, prosecutors said. She pulled up in the white car next to two women – one of whom had a 6-month-old baby in a stroller with her, prosecutors said.

Solorzano then said to the two women, “What would you do if I beat you with this bat?” prosecutors said.

She then got out of the car with a baseball bat in her hand and swung it at the woman with the stroller – striking her in the hand and causing her to drop her coffee, prosecutors said.

Solorzano hit the woman five to seven times in the arms and hands as the woman tried to protect herself, prosecutors said.

The woman with the stroller suffered bruising and swelling to both arms and severe bruising and swelling to her right thumb, prosecutors said.

Solorzano then swung the bat at the second woman on Mozart Street – hitting her five or six times in the arms and hands and once in the leg, prosecutors said.

A resident nearby came out and said she had called police, and Solorzano got back in the car and left, prosecutors said.

When officers arrived, they were told that another victim had been walking her dog around noon Tuesday when she saw a white car pull up and move toward her, prosecutors said.

The woman had to jump out of the way as the white car ran a red light, prosecutors said. The woman kept walking – only to find Solorzano out of the car with a bat in her hand at Cullom and Sacramento avenues, prosecutors said.

The woman tried to walk past Solorzano, but Solorzano blocked her path and said, “What would happen if I bashed you with this bat?” prosecutors said.

The woman tried to pass by Solorzano again, but Solorzano again threatened to “bash” her with the bat, prosecutors said. Solorzano then hit the woman on the back and shoulder with the bat, prosecutors said.

The victim tried to block the swings, but got hit again in the elbow and arm, prosecutors said.

A bystander ran toward the victim to help, and Solorzano got back in her car and left, prosecutors said. The victim recognized the car from earlier when it ran the red light, prosecutors said.

Officers also learned about a woman walking at Belle Plaine and Sacramento avenues when she was almost hit by the white car about six different times, prosecutors said. Solorzano kept reversing in her car and almost hitting the woman, prosecutors said.

The woman was eventually able to cross the street when she ran into a second woman – who was walking her dog, prosecutors said.

The first woman ran from Solorzano’s car as Solorzano yelled at her about her ethnicity, prosecutors said.

Solorzano then pulled her car up in the alley next to the two women, exited with the bat in hand, and threatened to beat them both with it, prosecutors said.

Solorzano then ran at the second woman and hit her in the arm and the top of the head, prosecutors said. She suffered bruising and swelling to her arm, head, and forehead, prosecutors said.

Both the women ran for safety, and Solorzano got in her car and left again, prosecutors said. The women both noticed a pink crown bumper sticker on the white car.

Police also mentioned another incident at 11:37 a.m. Tuesday in which a 45-year-old woman was with her young daughter in the 4100 block of North Campbell Avenue when the white car came up and Solorzano began chasing the woman with the bat. Police said Solorzano caught up to the woman and began hitting her with the bat, police said. The child was not injured.

Prosecutors did not mention this incident in bond court.

Police earlier said they were also investigating five other attacks.

All the victims provided a description of the suspect, and five of eight positively identified her in a photo array, prosecutors said. Meanwhile, POD camera video on Lawrence Avenue Tuesday showed a white Subaru with a pink crown bumper sticker that matched the description of the one the attacker had been driving, prosecutors said.

Officers ran the license plate on the white car – which came back to Solorzano’s parents. Her parents told police it was hers, prosecutors said.

Police went to Solorzano’s home and saw the car there, prosecutors said. Solorzano was taken into custody – and first taken to the hospital before being locked up, prosecutors said.

On Wednesday, the car was turned over to police by the family. The pink crown bumper sticker was gone, but its outline was still visible, prosecutors said. Officers found a short black and yellow metal baseball bat in the car, prosecutors said.

Solorzano is charged with three felony counts of aggravated battery in a public place, four felony counts of aggravated battery with use of a deadly weapon, and one felony count of aggravated assault.

She had not been arrested before.

A defense attorney said Solorzano is a lifelong area resident who lives at home with her parents – and has one child of her own. She is a high school graduate and took some classes at Wright College, prosecutors said.

The defense also said Solorzano has serious mental health issues. A health care order entered into court records Thursday indicates that she suffers from schizophrenia.

The judge ruled that Solorzano presents a serious danger to the community – and set bond at $100,000 for each victim – or $800,000 altogether. The bond was needed to protect women and children in the community, prosecutors said.

Solorzano is due back in court on Wednesday of next week in Skokie.

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