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Crime & Courts

Kingston man pleads not guilty to sexual assault of child

Bruce R. Best, 46, of Kingston
Bruce R. Best, 46, of Kingston

SYCAMORE – Moments after he was denied a reduction in bail, a 46-year-old Kingston man facing 18 charges of sexual abuse of a child pleaded not guilty Tuesday morning in DeKalb County court.

Bruce R. Best, of the 8600 block of Wolf Road, has been charged with seven counts of predatory criminal sexual assault, punishable by six to 30 years in prison, after police said in court records he had inappropriate contact with a girl younger than 13. The records show he had sex with her six times after she’d turned 13, and he’s also been charged with 11 counts of criminal sexual abuse, punishable by three to seven years in prison.

Chief Judge Robbin Stuckert explained to Best that if he’s convicted on multiple counts, his sentences would be served consecutively. The aggravated criminal sexual abuse charges could result in probation, and a conviction on any of the charges would require Best to register as a sex offender for life.

Best’s Rockford-based lawyer, David Hugdahl, filed a motion Dec. 1 to reduce Best’s $75,000 bond, saying his client considered the amount “oppressive,” and that he “has strong ties to the community and is not a flight risk.”

Best told the court he’d worked at Chicago Suburban Express for four years and was supporting his wife, four kids and his father-in-law.

Stuckert denied the motion to reduce bond. If Best posts $7,500 to be released, he’ll be placed on electronic home monitoring and be ordered to have no contact with children.

The victim was 15 at the time of Best’s Nov. 14 bond hearing, according to court records. Family members declined to comment after Tuesday morning’s hearing.

Best is due back in court Dec. 28.

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