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Fox Lake man sentenced to 7½ years in prison for sexual assault

Austin M. Billa, 28, of Fox Lake
Austin M. Billa, 28, of Fox Lake

A McHenry County judge has sentenced a Fox Lake man to 7½ years in prison for sexually assaulting a girl he knew.

Austin M. Billa, 28, previously accepted an offer from the McHenry County State's Attorney's Office and pleaded guilty Dec. 10 to predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, public records show.

Billa must serve at least 85 percent of his prison term in accordance with Truth in Sentencing guidelines.

In exchange for Billa's guilty plea, prosecutors dismissed additional charges, including several counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

The offense to which Billa pleaded guilty is a Class X felony typically punishable by as many as 30 years in prison.

Lake in the Hills police arrested Billa in January 2017 after a girl disclosed the abuse to her parents on two separate occasions, according to a petition for an order of protection filed in McHenry County court.

Billa was accused of sexually assaulting the girl several times between July 2013 and July 2014, according to a news release from the McHenry County State's Attorney's Office. The girl was younger than 13 years old at the time, public records show.

Billa posted bond shortly after his arrest and was released from the McHenry County Jail.

He was taken into custody again after pleading guilty in December, however, and remained at the jail Tuesday evening.

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