WOODSTOCK – A 49-year-old Marengo man was sentenced Thursday to 18 years in prison for sexually assaulting an underage family member for more than a decade.
McHenry County Judge Sharon Prather said Brian Minder's sex crimes, which began when the female victim was 5 years old and last until she was 20, were unthinkable.
"I can't imagine a crime more heinous than what you have committed," Prather said.
Minder pleaded guilty in March to predatory criminal sexual assault of a child. Because it was a Class X felony, Minder was facing between 6 and 60 years in prison.
He openly wept as he read a statement aloud in court, apologizing to his victim and his family.
Prather said Minder's admission was "too little, too late.
"As a matter of fact, 15 years too late," the judge said.
In asking for the minimum sentence, Minder's attorney, public defender Angelo Mourelatos, said that Minder struggled with alcoholism, and pointed to his limited past criminal history. Furthermore, Mourelatos argued, a doctor who conducted a sex offender evaluation found that he was unlikely to repeat his crimes.
"Mr. Minder is not making excuses," Mourelatos said. "He realized the damage he caused on [the victim] when he plead guilty."
Prosecutors said the abuse continued almost daily, and that Minder threatened the victim with death or rape if she didn't comply.
"The defendant clearly took away her childhood," Assistant State’s Attorney Sharyl Eisenstein said.
She asked that Minder be sentenced to 20 years in prison.
Minder must serve at least 85 percent of his sentence, or 15 years, before he is eligible for release. He also must serve at least three years of parole when he is released and register for life as a sex offender.