Police search for assailants in violent attacks around U of I campus

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CHAMPAIGN--Champaign police are asking students at the University of Illinois to stay on watch as they continue to search for a group of men accused of assaulting people at random.

A series of violent attacks at the U of I is sparking concern across campus.

"There's a lot going on, people are talking about it, so it is kind of scary," said U of I student, Kyle Molskow.

"I keep getting those campus alerts say that there were a number of unknown suspects," said U of I student, Jack Novelli.

Police are searching for six to seven men around 25-years-old that they believe are behind the random beat downs that happened early Saturday morning.

"There were five separate incidents," said Champaign Police Deputy Chief, Troy Daniels. "Four victims that received facial lacerations and injuries. And three of them had to seek medical attention. And one was knocked unconscious."

Four of the incidents occurred along Chalmers Street, while another was reported on Green and Sixth. All of the victims were men, and all the assaults appear to be crimes of opportunity.
    
"We have absolutely no idea why a group of people would commit this kind of senseless violence," said Daniels.

But students say it's not entirely surprising.

"Every now and then you'll see like five or six happen and then there will be a calm and it won't happen for a couple months," said student, Jay Livesay.

Now police are searching for the perpetrators of this recent round of batteries.

"We do not know if they are local suspects or if they traveled in from outside," said Daniels.
    
But officers say they could be linked to a dark blue sedan or SUV and ask anyone with information to contact the Champaign Police Department at (217) 351-4545 or callers can remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 373-8477 (TIPS).
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