CHICAGO, IL â”€ Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced charges against two men on multiple counts of possessing and distributing child pornography as part of â€œOperation Glass House,â€ a statewide initiative to apprehend the most active offenders who download and trade child pornography online.
Earlier today, investigators with Madiganâ€™s office and the Rushville Police Department arrested Dennis J. Henniger, 50, at his home in the 100 block of Liberty Street in Rushville. Henniger was charged with three counts of distribution of child pornography, a class X felony punishable by six to 30 years in prison, and 10 counts of possession of child pornography, a class 2 felony punishable by three to seven years in prison. Bond was set Thursday at $300,000.
On Wednesday, Richard J. Taylor, 48, of Murphysboro, was arrested after investigators with Madiganâ€™s office and the Murphysboro Police Department executed a search warrant at his home in the 1500 block of Oak Street. Taylor was charged with four counts of distribution of child pornography, a class X felony each punishable by six to 30 years in prison, and six counts of possession of child pornography, a class 2 felony each punishable by three to seven years in prison. Bond was set Thursday at $750,000.
â€œViewing and trading child pornography is not an innocent act but a terrible crime that perpetuates the sexual assault of children,â€ Attorney General Lisa Madigan said. â€œMy office will continue to be relentless in apprehending the worst offenders who trade these horrific videos.â€
These are the 65th and 66th arrests of Madiganâ€™s Operation Glass House, which she launched in 2010 to investigate and arrest the worst offenders trading child pornography online. The operationâ€™s investigations conducted by Madiganâ€™s High Tech Crimes Bureau have revealed a disturbing community of criminals who are trading and viewing extremely violent videos of children as young as infants being raped and abused.
Madiganâ€™s investigations were assisted by the Murphysboro Police Department and the Rushville Police Department. The Jackson County Stateâ€™s Attorneyâ€™s Office will prosecute the case against Taylor, and the Schuyler County Stateâ€™s Attorneyâ€™s Office will handle the case against Henniger.
â€œI would like to thank the Illinois Attorney Generalâ€™s Office and her staff for their hard work and commitment to pursuing these offenders,â€ said Schuyler County Stateâ€™s Attorney Ramon Escapa. â€œWe will continue working with the Illinois Attorney Generalâ€™s Office in prosecuting this case.â€
â€œWe value the work of the Attorney Generalâ€™s Office and the professionalism and cooperation between our agencies,â€ said Murphysboro Police Chief Brian Hollo.
â€œMy office was pleased to assist the Attorney General’s Office in getting this offender off the streets,â€ said Rushville Police Chief Chris Edwards.
In addition to Operation Glass House, Madigan leads the Illinois Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC) with a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice. The Task Force investigates child exploitation crimes and trains local and county level law enforcement agencies throughout Illinois to do the same. Since 2006, Madiganâ€™s ICAC task force has been involved inÂ 790 arrests of sexual predators.Â The task force has also provided Internet safety training and education to more than 368,000 parents, teachers and students and more than 17,500 law enforcement professionals.
The public is reminded that the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.