violence against women

UW-Madison Student Accused of Sexual Assault Allegedly Kept a Notebook of Victims to ‘Kill’

University of Wisconsin-Madison. Photo: Getty Images

Prosecutors on Thursday announced more details surrounding the case of Alec R. Cook, a 20-year-old University of Wisconsin–Madison student who faces charges of sexually assaulting at least four women. While “dozens” have come forward to police with other accounts of assault, they do not factor into the 14 felonies and one misdemeanor Cook currently faces in court. And so far, the most suspicious and disturbing evidence prosecutors have brought up has apparently come from Cook’s own belongings, according to the Daily Beast. Cook allegedly kept detailed notebooks on the women he met, stalked, and allegedly assaulted — even going so far as to have a note labeled “killed?” on one page.

When investigators searched Cook’s property, 20 notebooks were found and at least one contained an “index page,” listing the names of women, prosecutors said, according to the Washington Post. The notebooks included details on the women he met, such as “interesting facts/commonalities,” where they met, what the “present goal” was, and what the “next step” or “last step” was, according to the Daily Beast. Cook’s defense attorney, Chris Van Wagner, tried minimizing the significance of the word killed? on one notebook page. He told reporters that there was a faint line through the word and pointed out that it was in a box with a question mark. He added that prosecutors had not determined the significance of the word killed and only called it “disturbing.” “I was an English literature major,” he told WKOW, when asked about how he interpreted the word. “Every single short story could be interpreted in twelve ways. That’s my response.”

UW-Madison Student Accused of Sexual Assault Kept Notes