A West Town man was ordered held without bail after being accused of choking an 8-year-old girl until she passed out inside a bathroom of a store in the South Loop neighborhood Saturday afternoon.

About 1:15 p.m., the girl was inside a store in the 1200 block of South Canal Street with her mother when the two separated, according to police.

The girl went into the store’s bathroom. At some point, Reese M. Hartstirn, 33, came into the bathroom and started choking the girl with his hands, causing her to become unconscious, according to a news release from the Chicago Police Department.

He then allegedly picked up the unconscious girl and carried her into a bathroom stall, closing the door so she couldn’t leave, according to the release.

Hartstirn also pushed the girl’s mother when she came into the stall to rescue her daughter, police said.

The girl was taken to Comer Children’s Hospital for treatment. Her exact condition was not immediately available, according to police.

Citizens inside the store held Hartstirn for the police after they were alerted to what happened.

Police officers then arrested Hartstirn and took him to the 1st District police station, according to the release. While at the police station, Hartstirn became aggressive and swung his fist in the direction of a police officer, according to police.

Hartstirn, of the 500 block of North Racine Avenue, was charged with a felony count of aggravated kidnapping and a felony count of aggravated battery to a child under 13 years old, according to the release. He was also cited with a misdemeanor count of aggravated assault to a peace officer and a misdemeanor count of battery.

Cook County Judge Adam Bourgeois ordered Hartstirn held without bail Monday, according to court records.

He is scheduled to appear in court again on May 16.


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