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Jennifer Hudson Befriends Woman Once Known as 'Girl X'

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Jennifer Hudson recently befriended the victim of another horrendous crime, according to a report Tuesday.

As WBBM Newsradio's Regine Schlesinger reports, it was Jan. 9, 1997, when a 9-year-old then known only as Girl X was raped, tortured and left for dead in a stairwell at a since-demolished building at 1121 N. Larrabee St., in the Cabrini-Green public housing complex.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio's Regine Schlesinger reports


The assailant molested and choked the girl inside an apartment, scrawled gang signs on her body, and poured roach killer down her throat.

The attack left the girl blind, mute and wheelchair bound.

On Tuesday, Chicago Sun-Times columnist Michael Sneed noted that during the trial of her ex-brother in law, William Balfour, Jennifer Hudson noticed a picture of Girl X on the desk of Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez.

Hudson was so touched that Alvarez arranged for Hudson to meet Girl X – Shatoya Currie, 25.

Currie was invited backstage when Hudson performed earlier this month at the Taste of Chicago. Currie was delighted when the Oscar-winning singer-actress came out and embraced her, Alvarez tells Sneed.

Currie had been invited backstage by Alvarez at the Taste to meet a "surprise guest," Sneed reported. She smiled and laughed as Hudson came up and introduced herself, Sneed reported.

Currie kept blinking her happiness while Hudson talked to her and held her arm Sneed reported.

Currie's assailant, Patrick Sykes, now 40, was sentenced to 120 years in prison for the attack. In 2002, Currie's family won an award of $3 million claiming ht at the Chicago Housing Authority failed to protect her, and allowed conditions at the Larrabee Street building to deteriorate to the point where Sykes just walked into a vacant apartment and got the roach poison he used to harm her.

Currie now lives at a Chicago assisted living facility.

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