A year of cataloguing child sex abuse stories

Child sex abuse and pedophilia are not a Catholic problem, they are not a priest problem, they are an epidemic problem throughout our society, and they happen far more often than you realize.

I like to follow current events and read a lot of news. Over the years, I noticed how many news stories actually do document sexual crimes against children, but fly under the radar and don’t get top story / front-page treatment – typically unless they involve a Catholic priest.

So I decided to spend a year, from January 1, 2015 to December 31, 2015, tracking them on this blog to prove a point: This isn’t a Catholic priest problem. This is a societal epidemic that we don’t pay enough attention to, and it’s far more pervasive in our public school system than we want to face up to. A recent USA Today year-long investigation showed that.

The results:

  • 220 stories
  • 50 involving (mostly public) schools
  • 4 involving Catholic priests
  • Most centered in Chicago region

I stumbled upon these stories during my normal news consumption. I did not seek them out. I did not create Google News Alerts. I didn’t search media web sites for them. My catalogue’s not scientific.

The list includes stories about people (almost all males) accused of consuming or possessing child pornography. While those individuals may not have been charged with actually abusing a child, a child WAS abused in the production of those materials. It is not a “victimless crime!”

I used WordPress’ categories feature to track them under the category Crimes. I also slapped the tags priest and school where appropriate.

Ex-‘Glee’ star Mark Salling accused of child porn possession

December 29, 2015

The Chicago Tribune carries an Associated Press story reporting,

Authorities say former “Glee” star Mark Salling has been arrested in Los Angeles for investigation of possessing child pornography.

Sex abuse offender didn’t disclose social media activity, officials allege

December 22, 2015

The Chicago Tribune reports,

A Woodstock man who pleaded guilty earlier this year to the sexual abuse of a 15-year-old girl was charged with failure to register as a sex offender last week, according to police.

Corion Simpson, 20, registered with the Woodstock Police Department as a sexual predator on Dec. 1, but failed to tell authorities that he used a social media site, a requirement of the registration, police said.

Aurora man charged with sexual assault

December 18, 2015

The Chicago Tribune reports,

Kane County prosecutors have charged a 50-year-old Aurora man with sexually assaulting and abusing four females, at least two of them relatives, between 2005 and the end of 2014.

Martin L. Beyer was in court Thursday for his first formal appearance since his Dec. 11 arrest on 14 counts that include criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual abuse, indecent solicitation of a minor and attempted sex assault and abuse.

Oak Park River Forest HS teacher charged with sexually assaulting juvenile

December 14, 2015

The Chicago Tribune reports,

An English teacher at Oak Park and River Forest High School has been charged with sexual assault of a juvenile and is expected to appear in Cook County bond court Tuesday, authorities said.

Jeremy J. Lind, 41, of the 700 block of North Elmwood Avenue in Oak Park, is charged with three felony counts of criminal sexual assault, Chicago police said in a news release.

Note, this is a super-liberal super-wealthy suburb.

Naperville man free on bond in child pornography case

December 11, 2015

The Chicago Tribune reports,

A man from Naperville’s far south side is free on bond and awaiting trial on child pornography charges.

Bali Zhu, 47, of the 100 block of Rieser Circle, was released Friday from DuPage County Jail in Wheaton, after posting a $5,000 cash bond, according to DuPage County Circuit Court records.

Yorkville man facing child pornography charges

December 8, 2015

The Chicago Tribune reports,

A Yorkville man is facing multiple felony child pornography charges.

According to Attorney General Lisa Madigan, investigators recently served a search warrant on a home in the 500 block of Yellow Stone Lane and arrested Henry Wojewski, 58, of the same address, after officials said child pornography was found.

New Lenox man guilty of sex with girl he coached

December 7, 2015

His daughter was also on the team? And the daughter told the principal after the 15-year-old teammate blabbed to everyone?!

The Daily Southtown reports,

A Will County Circuit Court jury on Monday convicted a New Lenox man of having sex with a 15-year-old member of a girls high school bowling team that he helped coach six years ago.

Edward Cetwinski, 46, was found guilty of two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and one count of aggravated criminal sexual assault.

Ten-year sentence for Elgin man’s guilty plea in sex assault of child

December 4, 2015

The Chicago Tribune reports,

An Elgin man was sentenced to 10 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections following his guilty plea to predatory criminal sexual assault, the Kane County State’s Attorney said.

Pedro Valle-Trujillo, 21, of the 1600 block of Mulberry Avenue, agreed to plead guilty Thursday to the Class X felony in exchange for the 10 year prison term, according to a release.

East Chicago man sentenced to 37.5 years for child molesting

December 2, 2015

The Chicago Tribune reports,

A federal judge sentenced an East Chicago man Tuesday to 37 and a half years in prison for taking an 11-year-old girl to an Illinois hotel for sex.

U.S. District Judge Rudy Lozano told Edwin Tollinchi-Rodriguez, 30, that he thought the defendant deserved life in prison, which federal sentencing guidelines called for, but said he decided to “have more mercy on you than you had for the little girl.”