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Gurnee man gets 26 years for child molesting
By Tony Gordon | Daily Herald Staff

Ryan Reid


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Published: 1/8/2009 5:26 PM | Updated: 1/8/2009 11:45 PM

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A Gurnee man was sentenced to 26 years in prison Thursday for molesting five children and betraying the trust he worked hard to earn.

Ryan Reid, 30, made a tearful statement to Lake County Circuit Judge Victoria Rossetti in which he claimed his own victimization as a child drove him over the edge.

"I never confronted my past," Reid said before the sentence was imposed. "And because of that, I became the monster I so long despised."

Reid, of 1012 N. Boulevard View, was arrested in June after two victims told their mothers what had happened and police were called.

What emerged from the investigation was a portrait of a man who ingratiated himself with the parents of the children, then the children themselves, and then struck while he was alone with the victims.

The mother of three of the victims described Reid as one of her dearest friends.

"He quickly became part of our family," the woman said in a victim impact statement. "He treated our kids as an uncle, and they loved him as such."

But between June 2005 and February of last year, Reid repeatedly molested her three sons and two other boys who would frequently visit her children.

Defense attorney Jed Stone of Waukegan said Reid was undone by his own demons, inflicted when he was molested three times during his own youth. Reid was abused by a man in his bowling league, by the staff and patients at a psychiatric hospital, and by a radio disc jockey all before he was a teenager, Stone said.

He asked Rossetti to impose a sentence of 12 to 16 years, in part because Reid had volunteered to plead guilty in November to spare the victims further trauma.

"He told me the children should not have to come to court and should not have to tell their stories in public," Stone said. "This is true remorse and acceptance of responsibility."

But Assistant State's Attorney Mary Stanton argued for a sentence of 30 years, saying Reid had a chance to deal with his past but refused to do so.

Reid was ordered into sex offender counseling in 2000 after being convicted of improperly touching a young boy and a young girl. But Stanton said Reid quit the counseling after one session and refused to go back, even though he was jailed for doing so.

"The people question his remorse and believe it rings hollow and empty," Stanton said. "Every possible treatment was offered him and he declined."

Rossetti sentenced Reid to 26 years on the two counts of criminal sexual assault he pleaded guilty to, and imposed a six-year concurrent term on the three counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse Reid admitted. He'll also be required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.