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UW-Madison Student Faces 30 Charges Related To Sexual Assault

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University of Wisconsin-Madison junior Alec R. Cook is facing an estimated 30 criminal charges, four of which are sexual assault charges from four different women. According to Wisconsin State Journal, the 20-year-old was charged with multiple sexual assault counts on Wednesday and then rearrested on Thursday after another woman accused him of sexually assaulting him in 2015.

The Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel reported that the charges Cook faces include “four counts of second-degree sexual assault, three counts of battery, and one count each of strangulation-suffocation and false imprisonment” related to an incident on October 12 where cook allegedly attacked a 20-year-old woman at his apartment. Cook faces 11 felony sexual assault and two counts of false imprisonment in total.

After Cook’s arrest, a woman came forward and accused Cook of touching her inappropriately in class, adding 15 counts of misdemeanor sexual assault to his tally.

Assistant district attorney Colette Sampson said that a search of Cook’s apartment turned up a notebook where the former student detailed “the grooming and stalking of women.” Authorities found over 20 notebooks, but only one has been reviewed thus far. “Since then there have been individuals who have come forward,” Sampson said, “and law enforcement is looking through those books to search out additional victims that might be found.”

One of the notebooks allegedly contained an index that catalogued the interests of the women he was interested in, what he intended to do with them, and a vaguely defined column that was just marked “kill”.

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Cook’s attorney Chris Van Wagner chalked up his client’s charges to a “media firestorm” that is supposedly prompting victims to come forward under false pretenses. He blamed social media for resulting in people reexamining “their relationships with him and conclude, whether accurately or not, that they were the victim of a crime.”

Dean of Students Lori Berquam released a statement on Tuesday confirming that Cook is on “emergency suspension” from school while the charges are investigated.

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