Updated 5:16 p.m. Monday.
URBANA — A registered sex offender arrested over the weekend in connection with the attempted sexual assault of a University of Illinois student is being held at the Champaign County Jail on $500,000 bond.
Gregory G. Hayes, whose last known address was listed on the 1900 block of East Washington Street in Urbana, pleaded innocent on Monday to two counts of attempted aggravated criminal sexual assault and two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse.
His next court appearance was set for May 14.
Detective Sgt. Tom Geis said a woman was walking home south on Lincoln Avenue near Oregon Street early Sunday morning when she felt she was being followed. The man disappeared for a short time but reappeared as she was entering her residence hall, Allen Hall, 1005 W. Gregory Dr., U. A man, whom police later identified as Hayes based on a surveillance video camera at the residence hall entrance, allegedly pushed his way inside the building after her. Geis said there was a struggle and Hayes reportedly put the woman in a chokehold from behind and dragged her out of the building. Alerted by the woman's screams, another Allen Hall resident confronted the man and he ran off, Geis said. Police were called to the scene around 3:20 a.m.
After alerting other local police departments, an officer from Urbana recognized Hayes on images from the video and knew he is a registered sex offender. Police arrested him at his home about 45 minutes after the incident occurred, Geis said.
"It's another great success story for video cameras on campus and cooperation between local police departments solving crimes in a quick manner," Geis said.
Hayes, an independent contractor for The News-Gazette, reportedly told police he was delivering newspapers.
"We are continuing the investigation and going back through our older cases to see if there are any similarities and other unsolved sex assaults," Geis added.