Long-time art teacher gets probation for sexually abusing two students

CHICAGO — The long-time art instructor at a Near North Side private school has pleaded guilty to sexually abusing two students over a period of years beginning in 2010.

Oscar Luis Martinez, 70, pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse of a child between 13 and 18 years old by someone in a position of trust. Judge Alfredo Maldonado sentenced him to 30 months of sex offender probation, according to court records.

Martinez taught the girls at Chicago Grammar School and provided them with private art lessons in his Pilsen home, officials said as they announced charges in July 2021.

One girl told investigators that Martinez abused her between 2010 and 2018, starting when she was ten. Martinez commented about her body and began talking about sex and giving her massages when she was 13, prosecutors said. The victim also detailed years of inappropriate touching by Martinez.

Officials said the girl declined money to pose nude for Martinez when she was 14, but she agreed to pose in a bra and underwear while he took pictures. Martinez used the photos to create a nude painting of the girl.

Martinez

The girl’s mother saw the painting about a year later, but the girl denied that she was the person in the painting. The mother later confronted Martinez, who allegedly said he wouldn’t show the painting until she turned 18, prosecutors said in 2021.

Martinez was accused of asking to have sex with the girl multiple times, but she declined.

The girl told another girl about Martinez’s conduct in 2020. The other girl is the second alleged victim. According to prosecutors, the second victim described similar behavior and said Martinez created a nude painting of her after she posed in a bra and leggings when she was 17.

Both victims filed police reports in January 2021, and Chicago police detectives launched an investigation. That same month, Martinez posted one victim’s nude painting on Facebook.

At the time of his arrest, the school’s website listed Martinez as an “artist in residence.” He no longer appears on the site. His personal site said he received a bachelor’s degree in medical art from the University of Illinois Medical Center. He has painted murals “throughout the city” and has been appointed to various positions by elected officials, the site said.

Judge Maldonado ordered Martinez to register as a sex offender and avoid contact with anyone younger than 18 while on probation. Martinez is also required to complete a treatment program, submit to STD and HIV testing, and comply with other routine probation conditions, according to court records.

He had been on electronic monitoring for nearly two years while the cases were pending. Maldonado released him from the ankle monitor upon sentencing last week.