ST. CHARLES TOWNSHIP – An East Aurora School District 131 teacher was found guilty for failing to report suspected child abuse to authorities as required by law, the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office announced in a news release.
A Kane County jury today found Elizabeth Aguilar, 43, guilty of the offense of failure to report child abuse as a mandated reporter, a Class A misdemeanor.
Kane County prosecutors presented evidence that on March 7, 2018, Aguilar, a teacher at Bardwell Elementary School in Aurora, having reasonable cause to believe that a child known to her in her professional capacity was an abused child, failed to make a report of the suspected abuse to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, the release stated.
As a teacher, Aguilar is designated by Illinois' Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act to be a mandated reporter of abuse and neglect of children and is required to immediately report suspected abuse and neglect to Illinois DCFS.
Kane County Associate Judge Alice C. Tracy set Aguilar's next court appearance for Nov. 13 for motions and sentencing. Aguilar faces a sentence of up to 364 days in jail, the release stated.
Kane County State's Attorney Joe McMahon stated in the release that mandated reporters are obligated by law to report suspected child abuse.
“If the life and well-being of a child is at stake, it is not too much to ask. I hope this verdict sends a clear and strong message that there are consequences for those who do not take this obligation seriously,” McMahon stated in the release.
"Mandated reporters who reasonably believe that a child may have been abused or neglected must immediately call DCFS at 800-252-2873 to make a report,” McMahon stated in the release. “Any person may call about suspected abuse. If a report proves to be unfounded, the law provides immunity if the report was made in good faith."