Man wearing clown mask stabs woman inside Portage Park laundromat; victim speaks to ABC7

Maher Kawash Image
Monday, December 18, 2023
Man wearing clown mask stabs woman inside NW Side laundromat
A woman was stabbed inside a Portage Park laundromat Friday night, police said. The suspect was wearing clown mask, according to the victim.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A man wearing a clown mask stabbed a woman multiple times while inside a laundromat on the city's Northwest Side, the victim told ABC7.

The woman, 37-year-old Erika Gierczak, was still recovering in the hospital Sunday night with several stitches across her body.

He came up to me so quickly that I didn't have a chance to run, and he started stabbing me real hard
Erika Gierczak, stabbing victim

Gierczak was inside the laundromat around 7:30 p.m. Friday night in the 5800-block of West Montrose Avenue when she was stabbed, police said.

The victim told ABC7 that a man nonchalantly walked in with what she described as a clown mask before he allegedly stabbed her several times.

"He came up to me so quickly that I didn't have a chance to run, and he started stabbing me real hard," Gierczak said. "It was a big knife."

Gierczak said she comes to the laundromat all the time and has never had any safety concerns. That all changed Friday night when a man wearing a clown mask and a gray hoodie stabbed her eight times.

"I stood up with all the blood leaking from me on the floor, and I had still the right hand to call the police," Gierczak said. "The owners live upstairs, so they weren't able to help me."

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Gierczak suffered stab wounds to her leg and her arm, which required several stitches and a multiple-night stay in the hospital.

The attack has also left her mentally traumatized.

"The nurse was coming to give me medicine and was walking toward me quickly, and I jumped because I thought I was in the same position again," Gierczak said "It really affected me."

Other people at the laundromat Sunday night said it's heartbreaking to hear about the stabbing, leaving them worried for their own safety.

"I can't believe that happened I'm always here with my family... my girl," customer Juan Roman said. "We're always washing clothes at least every other week."

Gierczak is expected to recover from her stab wounds.

Police said no one has been arrested as they continue to investigate.