Man says attacker slashed his throat in Wrigleyville

June 21, 2012 2:43:20 PM PDT
Chicago police are looking for an attacker who slashed a man's throat for no apparent reason late Sunday night in the Wrigleyville neighborhood.

Michael Schmidt, 39, said he was walking his dog in the 1200-block of West Byron when a man grabbed him from behind without saying a word and then cut his throat. He is recuperating after doctors used more than 40 stitches to close the wound in his neck.

Schmidt said the man who left a four-inch gash in his neck had a crazed look in his eyes and stared him down after the attack before fleeing.

"I felt the knife go up, I jerked back, and it wasn't a real deep laceration," Schmidt said. "It was long, but not a real deep cut. He didn't sever any arteries."

"He just turned around and walked away, never once tried to rob me, never said one word," Schmidt continued. "It was just unreal."

It could have been deadly, but a witness called 911 and doctors at Illinois Masonic said Schmidt suffered only a superficial wound.

"I feel pretty fortunate. It was just pure luck. I mean, I didn't know what was happening. I just jerked back. The dog being there, too, everything kind fell into place. It just wasn't my time," he said.

Schmidt helped police create a composite sketch of the suspect.

Schmidt said he's disappointed in police and his ward alderman, Tom Tunney, because a community alert should have been issued after the attack.

"Until last night at ten o'clock when I got the text message from the precinct that, you know, this was sent out, nothing had been done," Schmidt said. "I wanted to meet with the alderman face to face with concerns about public safety, and he just kept blowing me off."

Late Thursday morning Chicago police told ABC7 the alert was pending approval. An hour later a representative from the alderman's office sent ABC7 the official police alert with a detailed sketch of the suspect.

A spokesperson for Alderman Tunney's office said that community alerts generally come from police after an incident is vetted. Tunney plans on meeting with Schmidt to talk about safety issues in the neighborhood.

There is no word from the police as to why it took several days to issue a community alert.


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