Federal attorneys nearing deal on Pyle sex case
ROCKFORD – Federal attorneys are inching closer to a plea agreement for a former McHenry County Sheriff's deputy accused of child sex abuse and child pornography.
Gregory M. Pyle, 38, is awaiting trial in federal court in Rockford on charges that he traveled across state lines to engage in a sexual act with a minor and used a minor to engage in sexual conduct to produce child pornography.
Pyle also was charged by state authorities in January 2012 with 10 counts of predatory criminal sexual assault. He posted bond in McHenry County but was re-arrested that August on a federal indictment.
He's since been held in federal custody without bail in Boone County Jail.
According to the federal complaint, the alleged victim is a boy related to Pyle. Authorities said the boy told the FBI that Pyle had sexually abused him since he was about 8 years old and that most of the abuse occurred in Pyle’s Crystal Lake home. He also allegedly abused the boy, who was 10 years old at the time, on a trip to Wisconsin in December 2008.
Pyle has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Love said he "expects" Pyle to take the deal, and change his plea, though Love declined to discuss the specifics of any offers tendered to Pyle.
"We're expecting that it will happen, but were not saying it will. It's not a done deal," Love said.
Pyle's Federal Public Defender Paul Gaziano could not immediately be reached for comment.
If convicted of the most serious federal charge against him, Pyle faces a sentence of 30 years up to life in prison.
McHenry County Assistant State's Attorney Michael Combs, who also is chief of the criminal division, has said that the state's case would move forward once the federal one was wrapped up.
"My thought was that if they could prove the case federally, it would entice him to plead without putting child on stand," Combs said. "It would spare that kid going though the trial."
Pyle has scheduled court dates on Nov. 1 in both Rockford and McHenry County. But Love said he believes it's unlikely there will be a change of plea on that day.
Pyle headed the Sheriff's Office evidence division since June 2010, but was relieved of his law enforcement duties shortly after his first arrest. He had specialized in cases that required computer and Internet forensic work.