Man charged in brutal rape of UW-Madison student held on $1 million bail

The man charged in a brutal and allegedly random rape of a UW-Madison student last weekend told police that he “saw red” before the attack and remembered hitting the woman repeatedly but could not be sure that he sexually assaulted her, according to a criminal complaint. 

Brandon A. Thompson, 26, was ordered held on $1 million bail Thursday on charges of first-degree sexual assault causing great bodily harm, first-degree reckless injury, and strangulation and suffocation in the attack on the woman as she was walking home Sunday some time after 2:30 a.m. in the 500 block of West Wilson Street. DNA evidence also links him to the victim, according to the complaint.

It was “one of the most horrific sexual assaults in recent memory here in Dane County,” Dane County Deputy District Attorney William Brown said during Thompson’s initial hearing.

The woman, who is in her 20s, was found naked, covered in blood and unconscious after the attack, according to the criminal complaint, and later diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury, multiple lacerations and broken teeth, a broken jaw and two swollen eyes.

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