Wheaton Teen's Child Grooming Case, Child Sex Assault at Wedding, Dairy Queen Fondler: Court Watch

Patch recaps happenings in major court cases, including a Wheaton teen's on charges he traveled to meet a 12-year-old girl for sex at the Wheaton Library.

Wheaton Teen Charged With Child Pornography, Grooming and Traveling to Meet a Minor

Wheaton: A Wheaton teen will undergo a sex offender evaluation as part of his case on charges he tried to arrange a meeting for sex with a young girl, court records show. Eric Pence was arrested in September after police investigated complaints from the girl's parents about Pence, who reportedly had lewd images of the girl on his phone. Prosecutors allege Pence wanted to meet the 12-year-old at the Wheaton Library for sexual activity. Pence has pleaded not guilty to child pornography, grooming and traveling to meet a minor charges. He is scheduled to return to court on Dec. 18.


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Man Convicted of Predatory Sex Assault of Child at Wedding Seeks New Trial

Elmhurst: The Virginia man convicted last month of attempted predatory sexual assault of a child and sexual exploitation wants a new trial, records show. Priyang Parikh awaits sentencing, but has filed a motion claiming he should be granted a new trial because of pre-trial errors by the judge and because jurors were not given the option of public indecency as an available lesser offense for consideration. The jury found Parikh guilty of exposing himself to a young girl at a 2010 wedding in Elmhurst. A young girl, and other children, chased Parikh out of the hotel after he took the girl into a side room under the pretense of giving her candy. She opened her eyes to see Parikh exposing himself, according to prosecutors. He faces a minimum of four years in prison. A hearing is scheduled for Nov. 16 on his pre-sentence report. It's not immediately clear if the motion will also be heard at that time.


  • Jury Finds Virginia Man Guilty of Attempting to Sexually Assault 7-Year-Old at Elmhurst Banquet Hall

  • Man Charged With Attempted Sexual Assault of a Child
  • Elmhurst Sexual Abuse Case From 2010 Working its Way Through Court

Trial Set for Man Accused of Fondling Self at Dairy Queen

Naperville: A December trial date has been set for a Naperville man accused of fondling himself outside a Dairy Queen earlier this year. Steven Wu was arrested in July after a teenage girl reported Wu acting suspiciously, including standing with his hands inside his pants, outside the restaurant, authorities said. Wu also appeared to be following the girl and three others after they left the restaurant. Wu is scheduled for a Dec. 5 trial on four counts of misdemeanor sexual exploitation of a child.


  • Police: Naperville Man Charged With Sexually Exploiting Girls at Dairy Queen

Guilty Plea, Sentencing in Armed Robbery at Papa John's Pizza

One of three men accused in a string of robberies, including some in Naperville, has pleaded guilty. In a deal with prosecutors, Travis Gamble admitted to one count of armed robbery and was sentenced to 12 years in prison. Gamble was convicted of taking a cell phone and cash from woman, while threatening her with a bludgeon, during a Jan. 12 incident, according to records. It's unclear where the incident took place. Gamble, Cory Paytes and Josiah McCroskey were arrested earlier this year in connection to multiple robberies in cases which stretch back to early 2011. Prosecutors dropped 15 other counts against Gamble in the deal that requires him to testify against Paytes. He returns to court Nov. 27, while McCroskey has a Nov. 19 hearing scheduled.


  • Two Men Caught Robbing Papa John's Pizza
  • Oswego Man Pleads Not Guilty in Naperville Robberies

Father Accused of Allowing Underage Drinking Off the Hook

Geneva: Prosecutors recently dropped the case against a Geneva father accused of allowing a drinking party at his home over homecoming weekend in 2011. Prosecutors cited a lack of evidence when motioning to dismiss the case against in their homes. Caruso successfully argued to have statements and evidence against him thrown out on claims Geneva police officers didn't have necessary permission to be on his property when they first observed a beer bottle near teens and, later, talked to partygoers. Prosecutors asked the judge to reconsider that ruling, arguing the bottle was visible from outside the property and that officers were within their rights while investigating an initial loud party complaint. The denial of the reconsideration motion left prosecutors with nothing to move forward with in the case, prompting the dismissal.


  • Carusos Hoping for End to Underage Drinking Party Court Saga
  • Caruso Hearing Continues in Court July 19
  • Caruso Hearing Postponed to May 22
  • Geneva Dad Challenging Drinking Party Arrest
  • Geneva Man Charged with Allowing Underage Drinking at His Home During Homecoming Weekend

Man Awaits Sentence in 'Geek Squad' Child Porn Case

An Elburn man arrested on child pornography charges in Geneva awaits sentencing after recently pleading guilty in the case. Scott Burgholzer faces probation or possible prison time for his conviction on one count of aggravated possession of child pornography when he is sentenced Dec. 20. Geneva police were tipped to Burgholzer when a "Geek Squad" technician at Best Buy called authorities in December 2001 after discovering suspected child porn while working on Burgholzer's computer.


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