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Former Wheaton Professor Pleads Not Guilty to Child Porn Charges

Donald Ratcliff pleaded not guilty to charges of aggravated possession of child pornography and weapons-related charges Thursday. He returns to court Wednesday, May 2.

A former Wheaton College professor pleaded not guilty to charges of aggravated possession of child pornography and weapons-related charges in DuPage County Thursday morning.

Donald Ratcliff, 60, of Carol Stream faces seven counts of aggravated possession of child pornography, two counts of possession of a firearm without a FOID card and one count of possession of ammunition without a FOID card.

According to a March 29 statement from Wheaton College, Ratcliff's employment ended March 14.

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Ratcliff is sheduled to undergo a psycho-sexual evaluation prior to a discovery hearing May 2 before DuPage County Judge John Kinsella. He remains at DuPage County Jail, with a bond of $30,000.

Prosecutors said earlier that Ratcliff “intellectually rationalized” the reasons he downloaded, viewed and shared explicit videos featuring girls as young as 3 years-old. He told investigators it was “potentially therapeutic” and a “healthy alternative” to adult pornography. He also said research in Europe determined viewing such images was a way to avoid becoming a pedophile.

At a March 8 hearing, after investigators tracked downloads of child pornography to his computer.

J. Burket March 29, 2012 at 05:03 PM
Not guilty? Interesting.
Lisa March 29, 2012 at 07:24 PM
Is he incarcerated or did he post bail?
Natalie Totire March 30, 2012 at 01:25 AM
Notice how Satan deceives people into intellectually rationalizing things as OK, just as he did with Eve. "You will not surely die when you eat the fruit...".
Mitch March 30, 2012 at 03:19 PM
satan? really? satan has nothing do with this and his existence is based loosley on faith. bad seeds are bad seeds, nothing to do with religion. not everything can be explained by "god and satan" that's taking the easy way out with a closed mind.
J. Burket March 30, 2012 at 04:02 PM
I didn't want to be the one to say exactly what you said, Mitch. But I completely agree. For those of us on the religious sidelines, the concept of Satan is just as baffling as that of God. I believe there are good people and bad people. Evil is man-made as well as chemical. And a good person finds nothing therapeutic about seeing a 3 year-old child engaging in sex. Don't need to be a follower of a higher power to understand that.
Mitch March 30, 2012 at 04:18 PM
thanks jim, its refreshing to hear that im not the only one in this town to feel this way. bad people are bad people. comes down to past life altering expierences and chemicals in the brain. yes, people should still be held account for thier actions and recieve thier punishment. its sad that sometimes i feel as if this town does not welcome people who have other views. really makes me want to move somewhere more tolerant.
J. Burket March 30, 2012 at 04:33 PM
Well, I live in GE . . . not Wheaton. Can't speak for Wheaton, but I think we are hyper-tolerant of other's views in this village. ;o)
Lisa March 30, 2012 at 05:05 PM
I believe he is still in the DuPage County Jail. His wife and children have refused to help him post bail.
Lisa March 30, 2012 at 10:46 PM
Well spoken comments Jim and Mitch
BIll I March 31, 2012 at 10:28 PM
Thats good Lisa. It's not too late to make sure you keep your opinions to yourself.
Lisa March 31, 2012 at 10:36 PM
Good to know. Tee Hee.

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