State drops additional assault charges against child molester
A Carol Stream man who recently was convicted of sexually assaulting his girlfriend's teenage daughter no longer faces charges of criminal sexual assault and aggravated sexual abuse of the girl's 14- year-old friend during an Aug. 24, 2012, sleepover.
Prosecutors Monday dismissed the additional charges against Joel Augustine, 35, and asked that Judge George Bakalis take the victim's testimony in the first case into account when sentencing Augustine on July 1. Augustine already faces a total of between 20 and 120 years in prison.
Assistant State's Attorney Anne Celine O'Hallaren told Bakalis several factors, including consideration for the victim, now 16, having to testify about the allegations for a second time, weighed into the decision to dismiss the case.
A DuPage County jury deliberated less than two hours in late April before finding Augustine guilty of two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, two counts of criminal sexual assault of a child and one count of child pornography. Jurors concluded Augustine routinely assaulted one of his girlfriend's teenage daughters from the fall of 2009 through the fall of 2012.
During the three-day trial the girl, now 16, testified Augustine molested her routinely until the final assault on Oct. 11, 2012, when she contemplated hanging herself to end the abuse.
The teen testified she never told anyone about what was happening because she was intimidated by Augustine, who allegedly threatened to break her jaw if she ever told.
The abuse came to light in October 2012 when the mother of the second victim contacted authorities.
The second girl testified during Augustine's April trial that he inappropriately touched her on three separate occasions during a sleepover at Augustine's home. She also testified Augustine attempted to make her smoke marijuana in an attempt to see how "crazy" she could get.
"I was scared and uncomfortable," she told jurors. "I just wanted to get through the night."
Augustine's attorney, Kelly Bennet, declined to discuss details that led to the case's dismissal.
"Joel Augustine maintains his innocence," he said. "That's all I can say."