Pre-trial release denied, again, for Campton Hills man facing child pornography charges

A Kane County Judge has denied a second request for pre-trial release for a Campton Hills man charged with child pornography crimes.

At a hearing last week, Liam Dixon, the attorney for Christopher Hinman asked that the 44-year-old be released on electronic home monitoring and other conditions.

Hinman faces 42 counts of child pornography charges.

Hinman was arrested in December, and another judge denied pretrial release at Hinman’s first court appearance. Dixon is appealing that decision; the 2nd District Appellate Court has not yet ruled on it.

At the Jan. 26 hearing before Kane County Judge John Barsanti, Dixon said a spot has been found for Hinman to live at a shelter in Peoria. Hinman's wife is divorcing him and has an order of protection barring him from contacting or being near her.

Campton Hills man faces child pornography charges

Kane County Assistant State’s Attorney Hillary Sadler objected, saying she had additional evidence about the allegations against Hinman. She said there was evidence of child pornography and child sexual abuse materials on Hinman’s electronic devices going back to 2017.

She also said some of the images depicted bondage. The bondage material qualifies the crime as a violent one, which could affect Hinman's sentencing if he is convicted.

She said that when Hinman was arrested, he was downloading child pornography files.

“There are no conditions this court can impose to ensure safety. Child pornography is a supply-and-demand system, and he is a cog in that system,” Sadler said.

Sadler said they had also found a text message from Hinman to his wife. It allegedly said, “I said I would slit your throat if you mention porn again and I will.”

Dixon said preventing Hinman from owning, operating or using any phone would suffice.

Barsanti disagreed.

“His desire to obtain and distribute child pornography is overwhelming,” Barsanti said. He also said Hinman presents a “clear and present danger” to his wife.

Given that, even if he is put on electronic home monitoring, Hinman would be allowed to leave home to run errands, “there are no other conditions that can mitigate the danger. He is free to go and buy and use any kind of technological device he can get his hands on. It (the internet) is just too available,” Barsanti said.

Illinois law regarding electronic home monitoring changed last year when the pre-trial fairness portion of the SAFE-T Act went into effect. Defendants must be allowed to leave home two days a week to do certain things, such as shop for food and household necessities.

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