Police: 'Ripper Crew' member registered as sex offender in Aurora

  • Thomas Kokoraleis

    Thomas Kokoraleis

 
 
Updated 3/31/2019 8:40 PM

A convicted killer and member of the infamous "Ripper Crew" has registered as a sex offender in Aurora after being released from prison Friday, police said Sunday.

Thomas Kokoraleis, 58, listed his address as Wayside Cross Ministries, an Aurora-based recovery center at 215 E. New York St., police Sgt. William Rowley said. He recently completed half his 70-year sentence and was discharged from the Illinois Department of Corrections.

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The "Ripper Crew" is accused of committing violent, sexually motivated murders of women in Chicago and the suburbs in the 1980s. Kokoraleis was convicted of the 1982 murder of Lorry Borowski of Elmhurst based on an accountability theory, meaning he was held responsible for the acts committed by others that resulted in her death.

Kokoraleis admitted to participating in Borowski's abduction but denied involvement in her rape and murder. He also admitted he was present when his brother, Andrew Kokoraleis, and Edward Spreitzer killed her.

After serving half his prison sentence, Thomas Kokoraleis was scheduled to enter mandatory supervised release in September 2017, but his response was delayed because he couldn't find appropriate housing that complies with the state's sex-offender residency conditions. He could only be detained until Friday.

Wayside Senior Chaplain Steve Madawick, new life corrections and senior program coordinator, told the Daily Herald on Friday that Kokoraleis was not expected to move there. Wayside representatives could not be immediately reached Sunday.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Borowski's siblings and mother long fought Kokoraleis' release. During a news conference Friday, they called on Illinois lawmakers to add a provision to the Illinois Sex Offender Registration Act ordering offenders not to have contact with their victims. The proposed law also would allow victims' families to request a no-contact order.

Kokoraleis had to register as a sex offender and inform local law enforcement officials of his whereabouts by Monday morning. Though he wasn't convicted of a sex crime and isn't considered a convicted sex offender, DuPage County State's Attorney Robert Berlin said state law requires him to register because the murder was determined to have been "sexually motivated."

Andrew Kokoraleis, convicted of the murders of Borwoski and Rose Davis, was sentenced to death. He was executed in 1999 -- the last Illinois inmate to have a death sentence carried out before the state abolished capital punishment.

Spreitzer is serving a life sentence with no possibility of parole after being convicted of the murders of Linda Sutton, Shui Mak, Rose Davis, Sandra Delaware and Raphael Tiradao. Another member of the group, Robin Gecht, was convicted of the attempted murder, rape, aggravated kidnapping and deviate sexual assault of a woman. He is not eligible for parole until 2042.

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