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Registered sex offender arrested on new child porn charges

INGLESIDE -- A registered child sex offender in Ingleside was arrested Nov. 20 in connection with new charges that he engaged in inappropriate conduct with a 12-year-old Edwardsville girl, police said.

On Nov. 20, Lake County Sheriff’s Detectives and the Sheriff’s Warrants Team served an arrest warrant on Joshua S. Hoffman, 29, of the 35700 block of North Ash Street, Ingleside, according to a news release

Hoffman is a registered child sexual predator, stemming from a 2016 search warrant conducted by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office Cybercrimes Unit. At that time, Hoffman was found to be in possession of hundreds of child pornography videos, police said. He was also found to be in possession of numerous illegal controlled substances and a firearm.

This November, Lake County Sheriff’s Detectives became aware that Hoffman was engaged in inappropriate electronic conversations with a 12-year-old girl from Edwardsville. During these conversations, Hoffman solicited and received nude images from the child, police said. During at least one online video conversation, Hoffman exposed his nude body to the child.

The Edwardsville Police Department, Lake County Sheriff’s Office, Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office, and Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office collaborated, and a search warrant was obtained for Hoffman’s residence Nov. 19.

Additionally, Madison County issued an arrest warrant for Hoffman on Nov. 12 for two counts of child pornography (one being a Class X felony and one being a Class 1 felony) and grooming (Class 4 felony). A Madison County judge set the bond on the warrant at $500,000.

In Lake County, Hoffman has been charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver (Class 3 felony) and two counts of possession of a controlled substance (Class 4 felonies).

Additional charges are likely after a forensic examination is conducted of the electronics seized from Hoffman’s residence and after additional testing of the controlled substances seized.

Hoffman was being held in the Lake County Jail.

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