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updated: 12/2/2013 6:04 PM

Track coach from Woodridge pleads guilty to sex abuse

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  • Robert Theodore

    Robert Theodore

Daily Herald report

A former Life Time Fitness track trainer known for lavishing his athletes with expensive gifts and trips pleaded guilty to sexually abusing a 16-year-old boy, DuPage County officials said.

Robert Theodore, 61, who has a previous sexual abuse conviction, entered a blind guilty plea to one count of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, DuPage County State's Attorney Robert B. Berlin said Monday. He's accused of abusing a boy at his home on the 3800 block of Hagen Court in Woodridge, the boy's home and at Life Time Fitness in Warrenvillewhile acting as his personal trainer.

"Mr. Theodore's actions are repulsive," Berlin said in a statement. "He took advantage of the trust this young athlete had placed in him. Instead of trying to bring out the best athletic performance in his young victim, Mr. Theodore, who cared nothing for the boy, used his position as a trusted authority to satisfy his own sick sexual desires. I would like to thank this young man for having the courage to come forward."

Theodore pleaded guilty in 1996 to attempted molestation of a 12-year-old boy he mentored in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program in Scottsdale, Ariz. He failed to disclose that conviction when he moved to Illinois in 1999 and took a job as a track coach at Lisle High School, prosecutors have said.

He was eventually fired from the school after parent complaints led the district to look further into his past, prosecutors said. He started work at Life Time Fitness Warrenville as a "highly competitive runner, coach and trainer" in 2001.

After being arrested in 2012, Theodore posted $25,000 bond and was released. Authorities monitored him with GPS and ordered him to have no contact with anyone under the age of 18.

Theodore appears again in court Jan. 8 for a pre-sentence report.

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