Press Release

For Immediate Release
Contact: Cara Smith
312-814-3118
877-844-5461 (TTY)

csmith@atg.state.il.us
July 28, 2006

MADIGAN: MISSOURI MAN ARRESTED FOR ALLEGED ABDUCTION AND SEXUAL ASSAULT OF SANGAMON COUNTY CHILD

Chicago — Attorney General Lisa Madigan's Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) task force, assisted by the Boone County (Missouri) Sheriff's Department yesterday arrested a Columbia, Missouri man accused of the sexual assault and abduction of a minor child last May from Divernon, Illinois.

Brian W. Richardson, 31, of Columbia, Missouri, was arrested early yesterday by detectives of the Boone County Missouri Sheriff's Department on a warrant issued on July 26 th by Sangamon County authorities after he was charged with two counts of Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse, Class 2 felonies punishable by three to seven years in the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) and one count of Child Abduction, a Class 4 felony punishable by one to three years in the IDOC.

Madigan said her office was contacted by Divernon Police Chief Jamie Lomelino in early May to assist in the investigation of a minor child who had been communicating with the suspect via the Internet through instant messaging and e–mail. On May 6th , investigators located the child in Columbia, Missouri. The child returned to Illinois. Investigators learned that Richardson allegedly engaged in sexual contact with her.

Richardson is being held in the Boone County Jail in Missouri pending extradition to Illinois. The Office of Sangamon County State's Attorney John Schmidt is prosecuting the case.

The public is reminded that these are merely charges and that the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

In the 20 months since its creation, the Illinois ICAC task force has arrested more than 250 individuals on charges related to the exploitation of children. The task force also has conducted educational trainings and created a Web site at www.illinoisicac.org to provide the public with a central source of information on child exploitation.

To report online child exploitation, citizens can send an e–mail to illinoisicactip@atg.state.il.us or call the CyberTipline at 1-800-843-5678.

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