Shiloh man faces additional sex abuse charges

News-DemocratFebruary 14, 2014 

The St. Clair County State's Attorney's Office on Friday issued additional charges against a Shiloh man accused of sexually abusing children he met through the First Baptist Church in Fairview Heights.

The Shiloh Police Department continues to investigate the case against 47-year-old Jeffrey D. Strait, of the 2700 block of Lake Lucerne Drive.

On Friday, St. Clair County Assistant State's Attorney Julie Elliot issued a three-count warrant related to one victim for aggravated criminal sexual abuse with a victim over 13 but under 17 and a two-count warrant related to another victim for aggravated criminal sexual abuse with a victim over 13 but under 17. Both are Class 2 Felonies. An initial four-count was previously filed related to a third victim.

Three other males have come forward with similar claims, which are being investigated. Most of the alleged victims who have come forward are now adults, but police have said the abuses occurred when they were juveniles.

The investigation began last week after a minor male made an allegation against Strait.

The church's senior pastor said that Strait did not have an official role at the church at 10401 Lincoln Trail and said he was only a member of the congregation. Police have said Strait was either a deacon or youth minister at the church.

Straight is in custody in the St. Clair County Jail in lieu of $500,000 bail.

St. Clair County State's Attorney Brenden Kelly said that anyone else who believes they may have been a victim should call the Shiloh Police Department at 618-632-9047.

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