Former first-grade teacher admits asking child for nude photos

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EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. – A former first-grade teacher in Clinton County, Illinois, appeared in federal court and admitted to asking a minor for nude pictures.

Prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Illinois said Jonathan Villmer Jr., 25, pleaded guilty to soliciting child sexual abuse material (CSAM) from minors.

Villmer previously taught at New Baden Elementary School and coached girls’ athletic teams in the Wesclin Community Unit School District 3.

“We know child predators lurk in our communities, but it’s especially disturbing when a former first grade teacher and coach admits to asking minors for inappropriate images,” U.S. Attorney Rachelle Aud Crowe said.

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The Carmi Police Department was conducting an unrelated investigation into the distribution of CSAM. At one point during the investigation, prosecutors claim police found a Snapchat account belonging to Villmer that had solicited CSAM.

Police obtained a search warrant for Villmer’s Snapchat account and discovered sexually explicit conversations between Villmer and a 13-year-old, including requests for illicit photographs. Similar conversations and requests with other minors were found on Villmer’s account.

Villmer was arrested on Aug. 18, 2023, and police seized his cellphones and other electronic devices.

Villmer will be sentenced on April 24. He faces between five and 20 years in federal prison.

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