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updated: 5/21/2013 5:42 PM

Man charged with church molestation also cared for District 220 children

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A Willow Creek Community Church volunteer charged earlier this month with molesting an 8-year-old boy also worked for a Barrington Park District program that looked after children before and after school.

Barrington Unit District 220 Superintendent Tom Leonard announced the connection of 19-year-old Robert Sobczak of Hoffman Estates to the Barrington Park District's Kids Enrichment Experience Program (KEEP) which was hosted at the school district's Arnett C. Lines and Grove Avenue schools.

Leonard said Sobczak had been employed by the KEEP program from August 2012 until he was recently let go by the park district.

Barrington Park district Director Terry Jennings said her agency learned of Sobczak's arrest through the media last week, rather than through investigating authorities, and immediately terminated his employment.

Though no further accusations of molestation by Sobczak have been reported, Leonard said the connection is being announced so that parents can have appropriate conversations with children who were in the program. His announcement states that both the park district and school district are working cooperatively with police and the Department of Children and Family Services.

According to representatives of the Cook County State's Attorney's office, Sobczak was a volunteer for a program at Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington that cared for special-needs children while their parents attended church services.

Prosecutors said that on Feb. 17, Sobczak is accused of taking an 8-year-old boy to a separate room and molesting him.

On May 11, a Cook County judge ordered Sobczak held on a $10,000 bond. His next court appearance is scheduled for May 31.

If convicted of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, Sobczak could face from three to seven years in prison, though probation is also an option.

Leonard said the Barrington Park District reported Sobczak had passed required background checks to be employed by the KEEP program and was under the supervision of park district staff while working with children.

Leonard said that anyone with information relevant to his criminal case is asked to contact South Barrington Police at (847) 381-7511, Barrington Police at (847) 304-3300 or the administrators of their child's school.

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