Police claim they recently discovered that a convicted sex offender was in possession of child pornography. Defendant Sean Whippler, 29, allegedly admitted he possessed such material in the past, but he “adamantly denied finding sexual gratification from them,” according to cops in a WTVO report.
He is currently on the Illinois sex offender registry for a 2019 conviction of aggravated criminal sexual abuse. As part of a plea deal, Whippler was sentenced to 180 days behind bars (with 70 days credit time served) and four years of probation for abusing a girl who was younger than age 13, according to the outlet at the time. The abuse lasted several years, authorities said.
One of the reported reasons for the plea deal was to protect the child from having to testify.
“If you can think about the trauma, not just physically, but psychologically, for a small child, and then expect that child to come into court and talk about adult things in front of a lot of adult people, it’s very challenging and has a long-lasting impact,” Winnebago County State’s Attorney Marilyn Hite Ross said at the time.
She said, “This resolution was the result of extensive discussions with the victim, the victim’s family, and the defense attorneys.”
Defense lawyer Elder Granger II argued Whippler was “low risk,” had no prior record, and was unlikely to become a repeat offender. Whippler’s probation was going to be more restrictive as a sex offender, the attorney said.
“So, it’s not like your normal, regular probation,” Granger said. “Sex offender probation is a lot more detailed, in terms of what they’re required to do and refrain from doing.”
Now Whippler is accused of possessing child porn. Illinois State Police and state attorney general’s investigators reportedly raided an apartment in the 4900 block of Linden Road at around 6:10 am on Thursday. Investigators claimed to find the illicit material on his phone.
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