Trapeze instructor charged with sex crime

October 21, 2008 5:47:10 PM PDT
A north suburban trapeze instructor has been charged with committing a sex crime against a teenage girl. Thirty-nine-year-old Julio Gaona operates the Flying Gaonas Gym in the 900-block of Green Bay Road in Winnetka.

He was arrested at the training camp, located at Hubbard Woods Park, last Friday afternoon. Police say he made "statements of a sexual nature soliciting inappropriate behavior" from a 16-year-old girl at the park. The incidents allegedly happened October 10 and 11.

Police say he has "a personal relationship" with the alleged victim's family, who live in the area. The investigation was initiated when the victim's relatives reported their suspicion to police. Winnetka Deputy Chief Patrick Kreis says police do not have any evidence that other children were inappropriately approached at the camp and that there was no physical contact made between the two, just verbal.

The Winnetka Park District has shut down the gym. Officials say the news of Gaona's arrest comes as a shock. The district heard about it Saturday night and canceled Sunday's classes - the last day the trapeze school was in session. Officials say it's too early to say whether the Gaonas Gym would be allowed to return next year.


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