Child Molester Sentenced in Starke Circuit Court

Robert Wisilinski
Robert Wisilinski

A Knox man who admitted to molesting a 13-year-old boy in February at his Heaton Street home is heading to prison.

Starke Circuit Judge Kim Hall accepted a plea agreement from 68-year-old Robert M. “Moped Bob” Wisilinski to charges of child molesting and possession of child pornography and sentenced him to a total of 27 years in the Department of Correction. They stem from a February investigation by the Knox City Police Department into the disappearance of two young boys from Parkview Heights. Court documents indicate one of the youngsters was found and told officers he had been at “Moped Bob’s” house all weekend. A second child was there when police arrived.

After interviewing the youngsters the officers requested a search warrant for Wisilinski’s home. Judge Hall issued it on Feb. 22nd. Officers reportedly found numerous digital photos and videos of young boys involved in sexual intercourse.

Wisilinski was convicted in DuPage County, Ill. of aggravated criminal sexual abuse in 1987, according to a pre-sentencing investigation conducted by the Starke County Probation Department. The victim in that case was also a 13-year-old boy. Wisilinski was not required to register as a sex offender, as that offense occurred before the registry was established.

“Given his age and the wishes of the victim and victim’s family, we ask the state to accept the agreement,” Prosecutor Nicholas Bourff told Judge Hall.

“I believe the agreement is fair because of his age,” defense attorney Richard Ballard said. “With the sentence he no longer poses a threat to society.”

Wisilinski declined to make a statement. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison on the child molesting charge and two years on the possession of child pornography charge. They will be served consecutively, for a total of 27 years, with no time suspended. Changes to the sentencing guidelines mean he will serve at least three-fourths of that time in prison. Wisilinski is also considered a credit restricted felon under the law, which means he won’t qualify for time cuts afforded to other inmates due to the nature of his offenses.

He must also enroll in a department of correction sex offender program, pay a $100 child abuse prevention and a $250 sexual assault victims fee. Wisilinski is not to have any contact with his victim and must submit a DNA sample to the state’s database. A child solicitation charge was dismissed, and Wisilinski was credited with 250 days of time served in the Starke County Jail.