A Beach Park man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for attacking, injuring and raping a 16-year-old girl that was walking on the Robert McClory Bike Path in Beach Park.
Tramane Johnson, 28, of the 38700 block of Sheridan Road in Beach Park, was initially charged in June 2021 with one count of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and two counts of attempted aggravated criminal sexual assault.
He was later indicted by a grand jury on three counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual abuse, aggravated battery by strangulation, aggravated battery in a public place and unlawful restraint.
The charges stem from a sexual assault that the Lake County Sheriff’s Office responded to around 7:30 p.m. on June 7, 2021, on the Robert McClory Bike Path near Northeast End Avenue and Yorkhouse Road in Beach Park.
Lake County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Chief Christopher Covelli said at the time that a 16-year-old girl was walking on the bike path.
A male described as being African American, possibly in his late teens or early 20s, approximately 5-foot-11, and slender build, came out of the tree line and approached the victim as she was walking.
The offender had numerous metal hair barrettes in his hair, which police said was a “very unique identifier.”
The suspect, later identified as Johnson, took the girl forcefully by the neck and shoved her to the ground, Covelli said.
He then removed her clothing and sexually assaulted her.
Covelli said that the victim screamed during the attack and a nearby resident heard the screaming.
The nearby resident began yelling to the victim to run to them and Johnson fled on foot.
The victim was able to run to the nearby resident who called 911 for help.
The girl was transported to an area hospital for treatment from injuries sustained during the attack.
Sheriff’s deputies established a large perimeter and began searching for Johnson.
A canine track was conducted by a Lake Forest Police Department canine unit. The track led to an area where police believed the suspect got into a vehicle and fled.
During the investigation, a hair sample was obtained from the scene and it returned a positive identification from the Combined DNA Index System (COMBS).
Johnson’s DNA was in CODIS due to out-of-state weapons charges, according to Lake County Sheriff Chief of Staff Anthony Vega.
The Lake County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division began surveillance of Johnson’s home and an arrest warrant was approved.
Members of the Lake County Sheriff’s Criminal Investigations Division executed the arrest warrant and took Johnson into custody without incident.
Lake County Sheriff John D. Idleburg said at the time that this was a “prime example of a community law enforcement partnership.”
Court records show Johnson pleaded guilty last week to one count of attempted aggravated criminal sexual assault causing bodily harm in exchange for prosecutors dismissing his other charges.
A judge approved the plea deal and sentenced him to 15 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.
Johnson will also receive 517 days of credit for time served while awaiting his case in the Lake County Jail.
He will also be required to register as a sex offender, court records show.
Johnson, while being held in the jail on the sexual assault case, was charged in a home invasion that occurred in April 2021 in Waukegan where someone was injured.
He entered into a plea deal where he pleaded guilty to criminal trespass to residence in exchange for his more serious charge of home invasion being dismissed.
Johnson received three years in prison in that case.