www.redeyechicago.com/news/chi-panhandler-who-beat-woman-in-south-loop-arrested-again-20111214,0,3808800.story

redeyechicago.com

Panhandler who beat woman in South Loop arrested again

Cops: Derrick King threatened to kill Uptown man

By Rosemary Sobol

Tribune reporter

8:52 AM CST, December 14, 2011

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A man who once knocked out a woman’s teeth in the South Loop when she refused to give him a cigarette was arrested again this week when he threatened to kill a man while panhandling in the Uptown neighborhood, according to Chicago police.

Derrick King, 50, was cited by critics of the state’s early prison release program when he threatened a woman in 2009, a day after getting out of prison for the brutal attack against Jennifer Hall on her birthday in August 2008.

King was sent back to jail after the second incident and was released late last year. He has been arrested on misdemeanor charges three times since then.

The latest arrest occurred at about 6:30 p.m. Monday when police were called to the 1000 block of West Wilson Avenue after King followed a man from a CTA 'L' station turnstile and repeatedly asked him for money, according to a police report.

When the man told King he didn’t have any cash, King continued to follow him and said: “I’ll kill you if you don’t give me any money,’’ according to the report.

The man became frightened and called police, telling authorities he wanted to press charges, police said.

King, of the 900 block of West Lawrence Avenue, was arrested and charged with misdemeanor assault, police said.

King's notoriety stems from a brutal attack on Aug. 25, 2008. Jennifer Hall was with her boyfriend when King attacked her on her 36th birthday when she refused to give him a cigarette outside a Jewel-Osco grocery store at Wabash and Roosevelt. He knocked out 20 of her teeth.

"My hair was down to my waist for 20 years," she told the Tribune. "I woke up bald -- no teeth, 85 staples in my head -- out of a drug-induced coma.’’

King pleaded guilty to two criminal charges in the attack and was sentenced to three years in prison.  But just 18 days after his plea, state records show King was paroled as part of an early-release program. He was given credit for serving a little more than 13 months in Cook County Jail.

Just one day after his October 2009 release, King threatened another woman near the same place he attacked Hall, yelling, "Remember the couple who got beat real bad for not giving a cigarette? That was me," according to police.

He was charged with misdemeanor assault and sent back to prison for a parole violation. He was released in the fall of 2010, this time without parole conditions, authorities said.  

Since then, King has been arrested twice in June in Uptown and charged with misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia, including a crack pipe.

King is expected to appear in court Jan. 9 on the latest charge, police said.