Former teacher gets probation for inappropriate online conversation with girl

  • Former Crystal Lake Central High School teacher Matthew Fralick appears in McHenry County court Friday, where he was sentenced to two years' probation in a plea deal he accepted from the McHenry County state's attorney's office. Fralick pleaded guilty to an amended charge of indecent solicitation of a child.

    Former Crystal Lake Central High School teacher Matthew Fralick appears in McHenry County court Friday, where he was sentenced to two years' probation in a plea deal he accepted from the McHenry County state's attorney's office. Fralick pleaded guilty to an amended charge of indecent solicitation of a child. Matthew Apgar/Shaw Media

 
 
Updated 10/22/2020 2:17 PM
Editor's note: This story was changed to correct the headline and information regarding a female student who reported she was contacted by in a chat room by Matthew Fralick. The girl was note a student at Barrington High School.

A former Crystal Lake Central High School teacher on Friday was sentenced to probation and ordered to register as a sex offender in connection with 2018 comments he made to an underage girl in a chat room reserved for teenagers.

The two-year probation sentence was the result of a plea deal that Matthew Fralick accepted Friday from the McHenry County state's attorney's office. In exchange for his guilty plea to an amended charge of indecent solicitation of a child, prosecutors agreed to dismiss an additional felony grooming charge that was pending against Fralick.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

McHenry County Judge Robert Wilbrandt accepted the plea and barred Fralick from having any unsupervised in-person contact with minors while he serves his probation sentence. He also must register as a sex offender for 10 years and is prohibited from communicating with minors online, McHenry County Assistant State's Attorney Randi Freese said in court.

Fralick declined to comment on the case Friday. His attorney, Albert Wysocki, did not respond to a Northwest Herald reporter who approached him for comment after court.

Fralick's career at Crystal Lake Central came to an end in March 2019, when the Crystal Lake High School District 155 board voted unanimously during a special meeting to dismiss him from his position.

Most recently, Fralick taught physical education, driver's education, and health at the high school. The position paid a base salary of $102,026 with $4,807 in retirement enhancements and $15,350 in other benefits from the district, district records show.

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Fralick also worked as the head football coach at Crystal Lake Central from 2010 to 2014, and formerly acted as the assistant coach for the football, girl basketball, and boys golf teams.

The police investigation into Fralick began on April 16, 2018. That day, Barrington High School Principal Steve McWilliams sent police an email that he had received from a concerned juvenile who claimed someone purporting to be a teacher at the school had made sexual advances toward her in an online chat room reserved for teens, according to the email.

Fralick told the girl he "often flirted with his students in the same fashion," according to a Barrington police report. She also claimed Fralick tried several times to meet with her.

About a week after the initial report, Barrington police contacted Prairie Ridge High School resource officer Delmar Dade to confirm Fralick was a teacher in the district.

Communication between District 155 staff members showed Fralick was placed on paid leave twice before school officials notified parents and staff. They learned of the situation in a late-night email sent hours after the teacher turned himself in on Feb. 1, 2019.

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