Man acquitted of home invasion, sex assault

URBANA — A Champaign County judge Tuesday acquitted a Champaign man of forcing his way into a home and sexually assaulting a woman there earlier this year.

Judge Tom Difanis found that Tyrone M. Geiger was insane at the time of the Feb. 23 offenses and therefore could not appreciate the criminality of what he had done.

Difanis found Geiger, 31, not guilty by reason of insanity of home invasion and criminal sexual assault. The finding means that Geiger, whose last known address was in the 600 block of Crescent Drive, will be held by the Department of Human Services for treatment until he's better. Under the law, he cannot be held longer than the maximum time he could have received for the two offenses had he been convicted — 45 years.

Difanis will have to hold a hearing to be assured that Geiger is better before he can be released.

Geiger agreed to waive his right to a jury trial and have Difanis alone review the police and psychiatric reports.

Assistant State's Attorney Troy Lozar and Assistant Public Defender Jamie Propps agreed to that procedure.

The charges against Geiger stemmed from an incident that happened about 1 p.m. Feb. 23 at the apartment of a woman that Geiger knew in the 1400 block of North Neil Street.

A Champaign police report said the woman was showering with her young daughter when she heard the bathroom door open and saw Geiger. Although she knew him, she had not seen him in years. The report said he began undressing and she was able to push him outside the bathroom, leaving her daughter inside.

In the hall, Geiger groped at the woman and made unwelcome sexual advances as she wrestled with him. She was able to call 911, but as police knocked at the door, Geiger blocked her path to the door and slammed it shut as police tried to enter. Police kicked in the door to rescue the woman.

Lozar dismissed other charges of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, unlawful restraint and resisting a peace officer in light of the judge's ruling on the most serious two charges.

Difanis set a review date for Feb. 21.

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