Child sex offender impersonated doctor to access children’s wing of Chicago hospital: prosecutors

CHICAGO — A convicted child sex offender impersonated a doctor to access the children’s wing of a Chicago hospital, prosecutors said Thursday.

Christopher Chothen, 39, has been required to register as a sex offender since he was convicted of abducting, restraining, and sexually abusing a 15-year-old in 2002. He was 17 at the time of that crime.

Now, Chothen is accused of using a fraudulent ID to access secure wings at the University of Chicago Hospital in May 2022. The phony identification listed a physician’s name but bore Chothen’s photograph, Assistant State’s Attorney Anne McCord alleged.

Christopher Chothen | Cook County sheriff’s office; Google

She said one of the wings he accessed is designated for children, and “several” children were present when he was there. McCord said video showed him in the children’s wing on May 12, 2022. But Chothen is not accused of harming or making contact with any children while he was on the premises.

A warrant was issued for his arrest in June 2022, but he was only recently located by law enforcement, according to court records.

While Chothen must register as a sex offender for life, McCord said he has not done so since August 2016. He has been convicted of failure to register in 2004, 2006, 2013, and 2014, she said.

In addition to those convictions, Chothen was convicted of impersonating police in 2002;  being a sex offender in a school zone in 2006; possessing a methamphetamine precursor in 2009; intimidation in 2009.

He is now charged with violating the sex offender registry act and presence in a children’s hospital by a child sex offender.

Judge Ankur Srivastava ordered him to pay a $50,000 bail deposit to go home on electronic monitoring. The judge said that Chothen is barred from having contact with anyone under 18 except his own child.