Urbana man gets 30 months after guilty plea in sex case

Urbana man gets 30 months after guilty plea in sex case

URBANA — An Urbana man who pleaded guilty to sexual exploitation of a child has been sentenced to 30 months in prison.

Judge Roger Webber on Friday imposed the sentence on Kenneth Laroe, 60, whose last known address was in the 2000 block of Barnes Street.

Laroe pleaded guilty in June to the Class 4 felony, admitting that on April 1, 2017, he entered the bedroom of a teenage girl in Rantoul and committed a sex act in her presence without touching her. The girl pretended to be sleeping while Laroe was in her room.

The girl was the victim in a 2014 aggravated criminal sexual abuse case that Laroe had pleaded guilty to and for which he was serving four years of probation.

Laroe knew the victim's mother, Assistant State's Attorney Scott Larson said at Friday's hearing. Despite a court order that he have no contact with the girl, Laroe admitted he went to the Rantoul home at the invitation of the girl's mother to work on her car.

Larson argued for a prison sentence of six years for Laroe, saying he showed little remorse and knew he wasn't supposed to be around the girl. He also argued that Laroe had not made good-faith efforts to pay his court costs in his 2014 case.

Laroe's attorney, Ed Piraino of Champaign, argued for a lesser sentence. He said the victim's mother invited Laroe to her home to fix her car, telling him her daughter would not be home.

While Piraino acknowledged Laroe committed a distasteful crime, he said the girl was not physically harmed and that Laroe had been substantially in compliance with the rules of his probation up to that time.

Probation officer Jeremy Jessup testified that Laroe was not making progress toward the court order that he learn to read.

In return for Laroe's guilty plea, a petition to revoke the probation he was on was withdrawn.

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