from the Circuit Court of the 10th Judicial Circuit, Peoria
County, Illinois, Circuit No. 10-MR-352 Honorable David A.
Brown, Judge, Presiding.
JUSTICE O'BRIEN delivered the judgment of the court, with
opinion. Justices Carter and McDade concurred in the judgment
1 Respondent, Johnny Jackson, was found to be a sexually
violent person (SVP). After a dispositional hearing, the
circuit court of Peoria County committed respondent to
institutional care in a secure facility. Respondent appeals,
arguing the court erred in denying him conditional release.
3 On November 18, 2010, the State filed a petition under the
Sexually Violent Persons Commitment Act (Act) (725 ILCS 207/1
et seq. (West 2010)) to commit respondent to the
custody of the Department of Human Services (DHS). After a
bench trial, the court found that respondent was an SVP.
4 A dispositional hearing, pursuant to section 40(b)(2) of
the Act, was held on December 9, 2016, to determine whether
respondent's commitment should be institutional care in a
secure facility or conditional release. 725 ILCS 207/40(b)(2)
(West 2014). The parties stipulated to the predispositional
reports of Dr. Kimberly Weitl, on behalf of the State, and
Dr. Kirk Witherspoon, on behalf of respondent.
5 Weitl's report stated that she interviewed respondent
and reviewed documents in his file regarding his criminal
history, prior evaluations, mental health records, and
treatment plans. Respondent told Weitl that he began having
seizures when he was eight or nine years old and they
continued until he was in his thirties. He then began having
seizures again in June 2015 when he was in his forties.
Respondent was hospitalized at the Elgin Mental Health Center
in 1986 for an alcohol-related suicide attempt, and he
remained there for two years.
6 Weitl noted that respondent's criminal history included
three sexual offenses. In 1986, respondent sexually assaulted
a nine-year-old female. He knew the victim from church and
offered to walk her home. Weitl's report stated,
"While on the way, [respondent] describes holding her
hand and kissing her. Once at her house, he lifted her dress;
removed her panties; and rubbed his penis between her legs
and on her vagina." In 1988, while still on probation
from the 1986 offense, respondent sexually assaulted a
mentally disabled 20-year-old female. In 1992, respondent
sexually assaulted a four-year-old female.
"[Respondent] was discovered under a blanket with his
pants unzipped and his penis exposed, next to a 4-year-old
female. The child's panties were pulled down and her
vagina was exposed. The victim told authorities that
[respondent] had penetrated her vagina and rubbed her rectum
with his penis. [Respondent] admitted to the police that he
had digitally penetrated the victim's vagina and rubbed
his penis between her legs; and he noted he had been
intoxicated the night of the offense. [Respondent]
acknowledged to [Weitl] that he had not known this child
prior to the night of the offense."
7 Weitl's report noted that respondent had received 84
disciplinary tickets while in the custody of the Department
of Corrections. He also had frequent contact with mental
health personnel while incarcerated. In November 2015,
respondent had a number of incident reports, including
multiple instances of trying to harm himself by striking his
head on the wall and with his fists, engaging in sexual
misconduct with another resident, and having suicidal
8 Weitl stated:
"[In] 2000 [respondent] was evaluated and it was noted
that he had 'briefly' been involved in sex offender
treatment at the Graham Correctional Center. Upon another
admission, this time to the Taylorville Correctional Center,
[respondent] denied committing any sexual offenses and
refused to participate in sex offender treatment. He was
diagnosed with Pedophilia in that evaluation. Other records
indicate that [respondent] participated in sex offender
treatment at the Big Muddy Correctional Center, but that he
had been terminated after three months for calling a female
therapist a 'bitch.' He admitted during a subsequent
evaluation that he had not gained anything from his short
time in treatment." '
report further stated that in November 2010 respondent
expressed a desire to participate in sex offender treatment
but in December 2010 indicated that he had some reservations
about the treatment and "wished to obtain more