Alleged kidnapper, rapist Matthew Harkey charged with Attempted First Degree Murder

matthew harkey

Matthew Harkey, 43, has been charged with Attempted First Degree Murder and a list of criminal sexual assault charges for allegedly kidnapping and sexually assaulting a Rockford woman.

The Winnebago County State’s Attorney, Winnebago County Sheriff and the Roscoe Police Department held a joint press conference on Thursday to announce charges leveled against Harkey by a grand jury.

Police say officers had responded to the 5900 block of McDonald Road in Roscoe on March 13th for a possible abduction. There, they met with a female victim suffering from head injuries.

According to the criminal complaint, Harkey had abducted the 34-year-old woman from her home in Winnebago County, handcuffed her and held her captive in a basement, where he beat and raped her. 

Investigators say she was able to escape on her own.

Police issued a warrant for his arrest on Wednesday. Harkey was spotted by police early Thursday, and was chased through Edgar, Douglas and Coles counties before he lost control and crashed, and was ejected from his vehicle in Piatt county, according to the News-Gazette. Harkey was taken to a hospital in Champaign county for treatment.

A Winnebago County Grand Jury charged Harkey with Attempted First Degree Murder, Aggravated Criminal Sexual Assault, Home Invasion, Aggravated Kidnapping, Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse, Residential Burglary, Aggravated Stalking and Unlawful Restraint.

Harkey is a registered sex offender in Illinois. He was charged with Forced Criminal Sexual Abuse of a 15-year-old in McHenry county when he was 21.

He also had an order of protection filed against him by another woman in October 2018.

He has been charged prior in Winnebago County for twice violating the sex offender registry rules.

He is being held on a $1 million bond.

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