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Testimony starts in fitness hearing for Lake Co. molestation case
By Tony Gordon | Daily Herald Staff

Paul Olsson

 

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Published: 12/1/2009 4:17 PM

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A 10-year-old boy testified Tuesday he was repeatedly molested by a Kildeer man during the summer of 2005.

The testimony came on the first day of a proceeding in the case of Paul Olsson, 22, that will ultimately determine if he stands trial on criminal charges.

Olsson was charged in September 2005 with multiple counts of predatory criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual abuse against four boys while he worked as a coach at the Lincolnshire Tennis and Fitness Club.

He has been found unfit to stand trial three times and sent for treatment at a state mental health facility after each finding. He has been returned to Lake County only to have his fitness questioned again.

On Tuesday, Lake County Associate Judge Christopher Stride opened what is known as a discharge hearing for Olsson, during which most of the evidence against him will be presented but will not result in a traditional verdict.

Assistant State's Attorney Ari Fisz said if Stride finds that there is reason to hold Olsson for trial on the charges, Olsson will be returned to mental health treatment for up to one year in a final attempt to restore him to fitness.

Fisz said at the end of that year Olsson would either be returned to Lake County for trial, civilly committed for treatment for an indefinite period of time or released from custody.

Olsson could also be released from custody at the end of the current proceeding, expected sometime next week, if Stride finds that there is not enough evidence to support the charges.

The boy said he was 6 years old when the incidents happened when he was taking tennis lessons at the club from Olsson and another coach.

He said Olsson molested him between six and seven times in the club's locker room and in a secluded area near the locker room.

The boy said he told his father about the incidents during a trip to his aunt's house, but did so reluctantly because Olsson had made him promise he would not tell anyone.

Lincolnshire Police Cmdr. Gregory Duffy said he was one of the officers who responded to the call from the boy's father on Aug. 13, 2005.

Duffy said he met with the boy on a porch at the back of the boy's aunt's house and asked him a series of questions to determine if the boy knew the difference between the truth and a lie.

After establishing that the boy did know the difference, Duffy said he had the boy explain what had happened between Olsson and himself.

Duffy said he then turned over the case to detectives, who ultimately said Olsson confessed to molesting the boy who testified Tuesday and three others.

Testimony is expected to continue Friday.