State's attorney: Keep elderly rapist locked up

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Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez is livid because the Illinois Prisoner Review Board has granted parole to a repeat-offender rapist who even raped the prison warden’s secretary while locked up in the 1970s. John Teague mugshot

Even though he’s 75, convicted rapist John Teague remains a threat to the public and shouldn’t have been granted parole last week, Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez said Monday.

“This defendant has a demonstrated history of committing acts of violence against young women – even while he is behind bars in prison. This is a slap in the face to the victims of these crimes,” Alvarez said.

In 1973, Teague was already serving a long sentence for rape and robbery when he was arrested for stabbing and raping the 16-year-old daughter of an assistant to the warden at Stateville Correctional Center. At the time, he was allowed to move freely on the prison’s honor farm. He was in prison for raping two young women and trying to rape two others in 1964.

Teague has been in prison for 46 years, and his parole was projected for 2022. In October, Alvarez wrote to the Illinois Prisoner Review Board to object to Teague being paroled early.

“This inmate has not even completed sex offender counseling,” she wrote. “He also denies the crimes.” She described them as “bold, brazen and cruel.” She also noted he was less than a model prisoner with five major disciplinary violations since 2000.

But on Thursday, the board decided Teague does not pose a major risk for re-offending because of his age, said Ken Tupy, an attorney for the board.

During the board meeting, one unidentified male board member was heard voting for parole “with the stipulation of no Viagra or Cialis.” When other members chuckled, he said, “I’m serious,” according to an audio recording of the hearing obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.

The terms of Teague’s parole include electronic monitoring, sex offender counseling and mental health counseling. He also is barred from using the Internet. But he will remain in Pontiac Correctional Center until officials complete his parole plans, including where he will live.

In the meantime, Alvarez will try to have Teague evaluated, declared a sexually dangerous person and have him civilly committed to a state mental health facility to keep him off the streets, said Sally Daly, a spokeswoman for Alvarez.

Daly said the Prisoner Review Board should have learned from the case of Julius Anderson, whose 2009 parole was opposed by Alvarez.

Anderson, now 61, was paroled to St. Leonard’s House, a Near West Side halfway house. He allegedly sexually assaulted three women after walking away from the facility without permission in August 2009.

After his arrest the following month, Anderson was civilly committed to a mental institution in Downstate Rushville.

“The Julius Anderson case serves as a strong and sobering reminder that a defendant’s age should definitely not be the deciding factor in evaluating the release of sex offenders,” Daly said. “Criminals commit crimes at all ages and to suggest that someone who is aging will not re-offend is a premise that we take great exception to.”

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