Abraham Shorey, the man who the Ithaca Police Department claims is the “Collegetown Creeper,” apparently fled before his felony arraignment hearing at Tompkins County Court yesterday.
The court has now issued a warrant for his arrest.
“Abe was just really scared,” said Isa Lake, the mother of Shorey’s three children. “He had no chance in court.”
She said that Shorey had left without giving her any indication of where he was going. Shorey had been out on $5,000 bail, an amount that sources close to the case say would have probably risen dramatically as Shorey was arraigned for charges of sexual abuse and second-degree burglary.
William Furniss, Shorey’s lawyer, was left with little to say this afternoon after his client unexpectedly failed to show up.
He said that he had talked to his client Monday, at which point Shorey gave no indication that he would not appear as scheduled. During a Nov. 29 hearing, City Judge Judith Rossiter said that she had “a significant problem getting Mr. Shorey to appear in this court.”
This latest development comes a day after IPD officials gave seemingly contradictory statements about what exactly Shorey confessed to doing.
Signer has maintained that Shorey confessed to being “responsible for many previous and similar crimes in the Collegetown area.”
Ithaca Police Deputy Chief Tom Graziani, however, told the Ithaca Journal that “He’s only confessed to [the Oct. 24 Dryden Road trespassing.]” Graziani said he was still confident Shorey was the Creeper.
Friends and co-workers of Shorey have told The Sun that he was a “good kid” who they feel is being unfairly targeted by a frustrated department eager for results. One friend told The Sun that Shorey had previously saved her from being raped.
Lake also argued that Shorey was innocent.
“Abe does not even fit the description of the Creeper,” Lake said, saying that he did not have a ponytail and was much smaller than the description of the Creeper given by victims.
In an interview late Monday, Shorey declined to be quoted but maintained his innocence. Both Lake and Furniss have been critical of the IPD’s handling of the case. Lake says that much of the information the IPD has put out — such as Shorey’s address, the manner in which he came to the station and the nature of his confessions — is inaccurate and highly misleading.
Furniss has said that the IPD eagerness to publicize the case could prejudice potential jurors from the area.
The man known only, up until now, as the Collegetown Creeper had been intruding into students’ rooms for over a year. His activities and persistence had escalated in that time: what started as looking through open windows at sleeping residents had moved to pounding on locked doors and sexual touching.
The suspect has been variously described as a pale white male, 20-25 years of age, 160 pounds, with short blonde hair, a goatee and a ponytail.
With Shorey’s capture, University spokespersons said that they were relieved and cautiously optimistic. They urged students, however, to keep locking their doors and retain their vigilance.
Archived article by Michael Morisy
Sun Senior Writer