Justine Bour wanted thank the judge, she said, after finding the man accused of sexually assaulting her guilty Monday afternoon in a Cook County court.
“I’m very happy with it, with the guilty verdict today,” she said.
Marc Winner, the former West Loop tanning salon owner accused by at least eight women of rape, was found guilty Tuesday of forcing himself on a former employee.
Cook County Judge Carol Howard read the verdict at the bench trial. She said Winner was found guilty of penetration and sexual contact and guilty of a lesser charge of criminal sexual offense. He was also found not guilty of predicate sense of kidnapping, she said.
His bond was revoked.
Bour thanked the witnesses and prosecutors, her friends and family.
“I would just like to say to any victim of sexual assault, that I hope you can hear my story and maintain hope,” she said. “Don’t give up, persevere, and if anyone tells you that you shouldn’t have had that drink, or shouldn’t have worn that dress, or shouldn’t have smiled, don’t listen to them. Have hope and be brave.”
“I’m very happy to say that Marc Winner has finally lost,” she added.
Closing arguments took place Friday, one day after Winner took the stand, answering questions from defense attorneys and prosecutors for more than two and a half hours and flatly denying all the allegations against him.
One of the women accusing him of rape is a former salon employee identified only as JB, who testified on Monday that Winner forced himself on her in the summer of 2009 after she says he gave her cocaine.
Winner admitted to giving the drug but insisted he did not rape her, and that she had been flirting with him that night. The defense attorney asked if Winner grabbed the alleged victim and started kissing her.
"No, it was mutual," Winner said, later elaborating, "She was giving me signals all night and we were fooling around."
Winner admitted to providing the alleged victim with cocaine that night but denied ever having intercourse.
Defense attorneys painted a picture of Winner as a germaphobe who ceased what he called “mutual” intimacy with the victim after learning she was menstruating.
Meanwhile, prosecutors focused in on a 911 call made by the victim immediately after the encounter as well as multiple calls Winner admitted to making to the victim after the alleged rape.
Both the defense and prosecution rested their cases Thursday afternoon.