Bond was set at $1 million Friday for Randall Bean, the 22-year-old man who police charged with three counts of attempted murder in connection to last week’s stabbings on the 1200 block of Marengo Avenue.
The early evening violence shocked neighborhood residents, and rattled one victim so badly that she is yet to return home.
“Imagine something like that happening around here,” said Orlando Ventura, the husband of a 27-year-old woman who was stabbed as she sat on the front porch of her home. “It’s not like we’re living on the south side of Chicago.”
The incident began at around 6 p.m. on March 26 when Bean allegedly slashed the screen door of a neighboring apartment at 1218 Circle Ave., where he lives, according to police. Bean broke into a first-floor apartment where he found a 50-year-old woman sitting on her couch, according to Forest Park Police Chief Jim Ryan. The woman struggled to get out of the apartment, but Bean allegedly grabbed her in the parking lot and stabbed her in the neck with an 8-inch butcher knife.
Authorities would not release the identity of the victim, but said she has been released from the Loyola University Medical Center in nearby Maywood.
Bean then allegedly ran through an alley and came upon Ventura’s wife, who was sitting with their son on the front porch of their 1227 Marengo Ave. home. Bean allegedly began slashing away at both the mother and the 2-year-old toddler. The woman tried to protect her son and suffered deep defensive wounds on her arms, according to her husband.
The day after the attack, she too was released from the Loyola medical center, after a metal plate was put in her arm, Ventura said.
But as of Thursday, Ventura said his wife was staying with her parents in Westchester, Ill., because she was too frightened to return home. Ventura, however, said the neighborhood is safe.
“I still feel safe in the neighborhood,” he said. “It’s not like something like this happens every day, or every year.”
Meanwhile, the young boy suffered a wound on the back of his left shoulder, but was not seriously hurt. He was released to his father several hours after the incident.
Another son, age 6, was in the house playing with a friend at the time of Bean’s alleged assaults. Just moments before, Ventura said, the street was full of young children.
“Twenty minutes before [the attack] this block was filled with kids playing around,” Ventura said.
The attacker was chased by landscapers who were working on the block. Forest Park police officer Bob Biel and two Oak Park police officers arrested Bean in the backyard of 1216 Marengo Ave., where he was laying on the knife used in the attacks, police said. Bean suffered what appeared to be self-inflicted stab wounds, Ryan said. Bean was taken to RUSH Oak Park Hospital where he was held for observation and treatment until being released into the custody of the Forest Park police on Thursday.
Authorities still have not determined a motive for the apparently random attacks, but Ventura said Bean was rumored to have been high on PCP, a hallucinogenic drug. Ryan confirmed that toxicology tests were conducted, but he declined to comment on their results.
Initial police reports that Bean had been arguing with a woman immediately prior to his alleged rampage were incorrect, Ryan said. Investigators still believe the suspect lives in an apartment at 1218 Circle Ave., however, the woman with whom he shares that unit was not at home when the stabbings occurred, Ryan said.
A woman who answered the door at the apartment where Bean allegedly lives said that Bean did not live there. She said Bean was a friend, but that she was not his girlfriend.
“He was a good guy,” said the woman who declined to give her name. “He was a really nice guy. He just had a mental breakdown.”
In January, Bean was charged with disorderly conduct following an incident at 1218 Circle Ave., Ryan said.
In addition to attempted murder, Bean was also charged with three counts of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, one count of home invasion, and one count of aggravated battery to a child.