4 teens face charges in attack on NU law student

Laura Olson

An incoming Northwestern Law School student was assaulted in downtown Chicago Aug. 11, leaving him in critical condition for more than two weeks, according to the Chicago Police Department.

Matthew Doyle, 31, was at the intersection of State and Lake streets in the North Loop at 10:10 p.m. when three juveniles kicked him and knocked him down, witnesses told police after the attack.

Two of the juveniles then went through his pockets and continued to kick and beat him, according to a Chicago Police report.

When police found Doyle, he had suffered a “blunt trauma to the head” and was in critical condition, they said.

Doyle was initially treated at Northwestern Memorial hospital, said Chuck Loebbaka, director of NU media relations. Doyle checked into the Rehabilitative Institute of Chicago on Aug. 31 where he remained as of Sept. 14.

Because of his hospitalization, Doyle was unavailable for a comment.

Law school classes began Aug. 29, eighteen days after the attack. Doyle was listed as an incoming freshman in the JD-MBA program, a three-year joint degree with the Kellogg School of Management, where the entire year is spent in the law school.

Four juveniles were charged in the case. A thirteen-year-old male, a fourteen-year-old male and a fifteen-year-old male were charged with robbery, disorderly conduct and theft. Another fourteen-year-old was charged with robbery.

All four were taken into police custody in a separate incident on Aug. 14. When police searched the teens, they found Doyle’s wallet and cell phone, according to the police report.

The case remains under investigation by the Chicago police.

Loebbaka said he didn’t have any concerns about the safety of students at the law school because of the location of the attack, which took place more than a mile south of the law school campus.

“Students were advised by the law school of what happened and when it happened,” Loebbaka said. “The incident took place off the school campus.”

Loebbaka did not know if Doyle will continue to pursue an NU degree.

Clifford Zimmerman, the law school’s Dean of Students, e-mailed law students to warn them of the incident. Students said such incidents are to be expected.

“I haven’t noticed any changes,” said Sarah Scopel, a third-year student. “A similar event happened my freshmen year, but it wasn’t a Northwestern student. It’s just a part of living in a large urban area.”

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