Date: 19th May, 2018, updated 20th July, 2018

While we have been chronicling the progress of the criminal case against former pinball designer John Trudeau since his arrest last August on charges of possessing child pornography, it appears he has now been charged with a series of new offences relating to the sexual abuse of a minor who was also a family member.

According to a report in the Herald-News – a daily newspaper covering the area south of Chicago – John Trudeau was arrested on the morning of Thursday 17th May, 2018 and charged on three counts –  predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

The charges are believed to relate to a seven-year period from 3rd September, 1993  to 2nd September, 2000 and to a female family member who was below the age of thirteen at the start of the alleged abuse.  The offences are alleged to have taken place at the girl’s home in Bolingbrook, a south-western suburb of Chicago.

Trudeau is believed to have been living with family in the city of Nevada in Iowa while on bail for the two on-going charges of possession of child pornography, and it was there that he was arrested on Thursday and taken to the city’s Story County Jail.

John Trudeau
John Trudeau (picture: Story County Sheriff’s Office)

The police in Bolingbrrok received the complaint which led to these new charges on 1st December last year, but it has taken until mid-May before the charges were brought and John Trudeau was re-arrested. The complaint alleges Trudeau held a “position of trust, authority or supervision” in relation to the victim.

UPDATE – 20th JULY 2018

It appears two new charges have been added to to the case against John Trudeau.

He was originally charged with predatory criminal sexual assault of a child under the age of 13, criminal sexual assault of a family member under the age of 18 and aggravated criminal sexual abuse of a family member under the age of 18.

He is now facing a total of five charges in this case (in addition to the earlier separate charges of two counts of possession of child pornography) with the addition of aggrivated criminal sexual abuse of a victim older than 5 years, and criminal sexual assault of a victim aged 13-17 while in a supervisory role.  The new charges date from September 1995 – the same date as one of the previous three charges – while the other two are from two years prior.

When he was arrested on the three charges Trudeau was held at a jail in Storey County, Iowa, close to where he was living.  At the end of May he was moved to a Will County jail in Joliet, Illinois, nearer the scene of the alleged crimes.  Bail was set at $200,000.

On 8th June a grand jury was called to consider the evidence and decide if the case should go to court.

Then on 14th June Trudeau was called before a judge in the arraignment, where the charges against the defendant are read out and a plea entered.

That plea was “not guilty”, and so on 27th June a pre-trial hearing was held to decide which evidence would be presented and which witnesses called.

Finally, on 10th July there was a motion for the bail to be reduced.  The motion was denied and John Trudeau was returned to jail to await the start of the court case.


Since our previous update there have been two further court appearances.  The first was on 17th August and the second on 13th September.  Neither court hearing advanced the process much beyond continuing the case for pre-trial investigation and returning the defendant into the custody of the Will County Sheriff at Will County jail in Joliet.

The next pre-trial hearing is scheduled for 9:30am on 15th November, 2018 in courtroom 402 at the Will County Courthouse at 14 West Jefferson, Joliet, Illinois.

UPDATE – 18th JANUARY 2019

The case involving the five charges was concluded today with a guilty plea in one of the two most minor charges and the remaining four charges dropped.

You can read all about the outcome and the sentence in our report here.

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