Chicago sex assault charges linked to '50 Shades of Grey' movie

A University of Illinois at Chicago student leader was charged with sexually assaulting a 19-year-old female student in what Cook County prosecutors said Monday was part of a reenactment of scenes from the film "50 Shades of Grey."

Freshman Mohammad Hossain, 19, who his attorney said is studying bionuclear engineering, appeared shocked after a Cook County judge set his bail at $500,000. Hossain walked back to the lockup with his mouth wide open.


The judge was taken aback after Hossain's lawyer, assistant Cook County public defender Sandra Bennewitz, said Hossain had been involved with several UIC leadership programs, was a student ambassador to the alumni association and was on the triathlon team.

"Sandra, how can someone involved in all that let a movie persuade him to do something like this?" asked Judge Adam Bourgeois Jr.

"He would say that it was consensual," she replied.

Prosecutors said Hossain and the woman went to Hossain's dorm room about 5:30 p.m. Saturday. The two had "previously been intimate" but were not dating, said assistant state's attorney Sarah Karr.

Once inside his dorm, Hossain allegedly asked the woman to remove her clothing and she did, keeping on her bra and underwear, Karr said. He then bound her hands above her head and to a bed with a belt, used another belt to bind her legs and stuffed a necktie into her mouth, Karr said.

Hossain used a knit cap to cover the woman's eyes, Karr said, and removed the woman's bra and underwear. He then began striking the woman with a belt, the prosecutor said. After he hit her several times, the woman told Hossain he was hurting her, told him to stop "and began shaking her head and crying," Karr said.

Hossain continued striking the woman - including with his fists, according to an arrest report - and she managed to free her arms. But he held her arms behind her back and sexually assaulted her as she continued to plead with him to stop, Karr said.

Hossain's roommate came home soon after the assault and, prosecutors said, Hossain held the door shut to prevent him from entering. The woman left and told another person what had happened, then called police.

Police arrested Hossain later that night in another dorm building, according to an arrest report. He was interviewed by university detectives and, according to Karr, admitted assaulting the woman and "doing something wrong." He allegedly told police he and the woman were reenacting scenes from "50 Shades of Grey."