Crime

Former Southern Illinois principal, pastor charged with grooming

Child sexual abuse statistics in the United States

One in four girls and one in six boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18 years old, according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.
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One in four girls and one in six boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18 years old, according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.

The former principal of Thompsonville High School is facing felony grooming charges.

John J. Robinson, 55, was arrested on May 21, WSIL 3 reported. Brock Harris, the superintendent of Thompsonville Community Unit School District 174, said he accepted Robinson’s resignation the day before.

According to KFVS 12, he’d been on administrative leave since May 17. Robinson was also a pastor at Thompsonville Baptist Church.

Grooming is defined as knowingly using an online service, internet service or other electronic data storage device to seduce, solicit or lure a child into committing a sexual act.

Robinson’s bail was set at $20,000. He is being held at the Franklin County Jail as an investigation continues.

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Hana Muslic has been a public safety reporter for the Belleville News-Democrat since August 2018, covering everything from crime and courts to accidents, fires and natural disasters. She is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s College of Journalism and her previous work can be found in The Lincoln Journal-Star and The Kansas City Star.

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