Man convicted of rape, kidnapping deemed 'sexually violent'; must remain in IDHS custody

Johnny Westbrook | Illinois Department of Corrections (Sun-Times Media Wire)

A convicted sex offender was deemed a "sexually violent person" by a jury Tuesday and committed to the Illinois Department of Human Services.

A jury ruled that Johnny Westbrook, 61, was sexually violent and must remain in the custody of IDHS for treatment following a two-day trial, according to a statement from the Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office.

"This offender has a long history of committing violent acts against women, and he cannot be allowed to reenter society," Madigan said in the statement.

Westbrook, of Robbins, was sentenced to 60 years in prison for sexual assault and kidnapping convictions in 1985, according to prosecutors and Illinois Department of Corrections records. He also served prison time for multiple 1980 convictions, including rape, aggravated kidnapping, armed robbery and burglary.

Under the Sexually Violent Persons Act, people who have been convicted of sexually violent offenses and suffer from a mental disorder can be committed to IDHS custody, the attorney general's office said. Prosecutors must prove that such offenders are likely to commit future acts of sexual violence if they were released.

Once committed to IDHS, offenders are re-evaluated on a regular basis to determine if they continue to meet the criteria for commitment as a sexually violent person, authorities said.

Following the verdict, Westbrook was returned to an IDHS treatment and detention facility in Rushville in western Illinois.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire - Copyright Chicago Sun-Times 2016.)
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