A Lake Villa man has been indicted by a grand jury on more than a dozen serious charges alleging he used a hidden device to record nude children and adults in homes in Lake County.
The Lake County Sheriff’s Office was notified in August after a victim reported they had been unlawfully video recorded at a residence in the 371000 block of Loretto Avenue in unincorporated Lake Villa.
The victim was living with a family friend, identified as 51-year-old Wilbur J. Maltby, at the Loretto Avenue residence when she found a strange device plugged into an outlet in the bathroom.
Lake County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Chief Christopher Covelli said the device resembled a charging cube, commonly used to charge electronics, but a closer examination of the device revealed it appeared to contain a hidden camera.
The victim dissembled the device and found there was a memory card inside of it.
An inspection of the contents of the memory card revealed nude footage of her and others inside the bathroom of the home, Covelli said.
The victim called the sheriff’s office after seeing what was contained on the memory card.
Sheriff’s detectives conducted a search warrant in early November at Maltby’s residence.
Sheriff’s detectives seized multiple electronic devices, including devices with electronic storage.
Maltby was initially charged in November with two counts of unlawful video recording at a residence.
The Lake County Sheriff’s Office Cybercrime Division conducted an analysis on the devices seized during the search warrant.
The analysis revealed numerous photos and videos of nude individuals and manufactured child pornography, recorded at three different locations, Covelli said.
The two other locations included residences in Grayslake and Fox Lake, which were the homes of Maltby’s friends.
A further investigation revealed Maltby was responsible for recording the nude images and videos of both children and adults, Covelli said.
Following the examination of the electronics seized during the search warrant and additional investigation, the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office presented several additional charges to a Lake County grand jury.
On Wednesday, the grand jury returned indictments for Maltby on three counts of manufacturing child pornography, seven counts of possession of child pornography and five counts of unauthorized video recording.
All the charges are felonies, including the most serious charge — manufacturing child pornography — which is a Class X felony.
“Our detectives did a terrific job thoroughly investigating this incident, which ultimately led to positively identifying nine additional victims. Due to their diligence, our detectives have been able to provide the first steps of justice for the identified victims,” Lake County Sheriff John Idleburg said.
Maltby is scheduled to appear in court on Monday.