Naperville man convicted of sexually assaulting, photographing boy
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Grant Gambaiani's retrial on charges he sexually assaulted and took nude photos of a 10-year-old boy ended with the same verdict his first trial did: guilty.
A DuPage County jury deliberated about 3 1/2 hours Monday before convicting the former Naperville man of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, aggravated criminal sexual abuse and 18 counts of various child pornography offenses.
Gambaiani, 30, who was previously convicted in 2010, was serving a 43-year prison term last year when he was granted a new trial on appeal. The Second District Appellate Court in Elgin ruled the earlier proceedings should have resulted in a mistrial because some evidence wasn't disclosed to the defense until testimony was well under way.
On Monday, prosecutors once again implored jurors to convict Gambaiani, arguing he systematically preyed on the victim by showing him child pornography, taking explicit photos of him and repeatedly sexually assaulting him while telling him it was their "secret."
"He took (the victim's) trust and he changed it into something sick and grotesque and criminal," Assistant State's Attorney Enza LaMonica, who prosecuted the case with Assistant State's Attorney Joe Ruggiero, said in closing arguments.
Defense attorney Stephen Brundage didn't dispute some of the allegations but asserted the evidence did not prove the most serious counts of sexual misconduct and child pornography.
"They're trying to make the puzzle pieces fit," he told the jury.
Last year, Gambaiani rejected a plea bargain that would have avoided a second trial, prosecutors said in court at the time. Specifics of the proposal weren't disclosed.
In a statement late Monday, DuPage State's Attorney Bob Berlin said Gambaiani used the young victim to "satisfy his deviant desires."
"He stole this young boy's innocence, making him a victim of sexual assault and child pornography at the age of 10," Berlin said. "He violated the trust placed in him by his victim's family. He violated the trust placed in him by the victim and he violated his victim in the worst possible way."
Gambaiani's next court appearance is Nov. 6 in front of Judge Daniel Guerin for post-trial motions.
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