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updated: 8/14/2012 9:30 PM

McHenry County deputy now also facing child porn charges

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  • Gregory Pyle

      Gregory Pyle

 
 

A McHenry County sheriff's deputy who was charged in January with sexually assaulting a young boy is now accused of taking explicit pictures of a 10-year-old boy and transmitting them over the Internet.

Sgt. Gregory M. Pyle, 36, who was once the sheriff's department's lead investigator for child pornography, was charged in federal court Tuesday with aggravated sexual abuse of a child and producing child pornography by the sexual exploitation of a child, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Pyle, a 10-year veteran of the department, is accused of sexually abusing the child on multiple occasions, including on a trip to Wisconsin in December 2008, according to the federal complaint. The charges allege Pyle traveled to Wisconsin to engage in a sexual act with the child and to produce child pornography that he later transmitted over the Internet.

According to prosecutors, an individual who was under investigation for child pornography identified the user names of people he had traded child pornography with on the Internet, and investigators linked Pyle to two of those user names.

Pyle, of Crest Hill and formerly of Crystal Lake, appeared in U.S. District Court in Rockford Tuesday and is being held without bail pending a detention hearing set for Friday.

The new charges come seven months after Pyle surrendered to Illinois State Police investigators on 10 counts of predatory criminal sexual assault. Court documents alleged the assaults took place between September 2006 and September 2010, all with the same child, who was under 13.

It was unclear Tuesday whether the child pornography subject is the same victim.

Pyle has specialized training in computer forensics and was also a member of the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force before he was arrested in January, according to Michael Combs, chief of the criminal division of the McHenry County state's attorney's office.

Prosecutors said Pyle was the head of the evidence department at the sheriff's office when he turned himself in on Jan. 9.

Pyle posted 10 percent of $200,000 bail shortly after he surrendered to police in January.

Pyle was relieved of his duties and placed on administrative leave after the original charges, and his court date had been continued until Sept. 10 before the new charges were filed Tuesday.

If convicted on crossing a state line to engage in a sexual act with a minor under 12, Pyle could face a minimum sentence of 30 years and a maximum of life in prison. A charge of sexual exploitation of a child under 12 for the purpose of producing child pornography carries a minimum of 15 years and a maximum of 30 years in prison. Both counts carry a maximum fine of $250,000.

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