A Granite City man accused of kidnapping his 13-year-old stepdaughter and her infant son has been sentenced to 45 years in prison in Bond County for sex abuse, in a separate case.
Christopher Derleth, 40, was sentenced Friday on counts of predatory criminal sexual assault of a female child and perjury in Bond County. The girl’s identity has not been released.
As of Tuesday, Derleth’s kidnapping case in Madison County still was pending. He is charged there with aggravated kidnapping of a child with an intellectual disability. He’s accused of taking his stepdaughter and the infant from a foster home, and fleeing to West Virginia.
Bond County State’s Attorney Chris Bauer said he was pleased that the negotiation of a plea deal in the sex abuse case meant the child victim did not have to take the stand to testify about what happened to her.
“As a prosecutor, we have certain goals — the protection of the public, punishment for the offender, incapacitation of the offender and protection of the victim,” Bauer said. “We accomplished those goals here ... He could be released no sooner than between 76 and 77 years of age. I think that incapacitates him and removes him from the streets, so he’s no longer a threat to the public.”
Bauer credited Madison County and Bond County deputies who worked to put together the case against Derleth.
The perjury conviction stems from a false statement Derleth made in February 2015 in an affidavit to the court in the adoption case of his two stepdaughters, Katherine and Amber. He claimed he had never been arrested and charged with criminal offenses, even though he had two criminal charges in 1994 and 1999 in Madison County.
In 1994, Derleth, who was 17 at the time, was charged with videotaping himself having sex with a girl younger than 18, and was sentenced to court supervision. In 1999, he punched a Granite City police officer and stole his squad car and was sentenced to 18 months of probation.
Derleth is also accused of kidnapping stepdaughter Katherine and her newborn son from a foster home in Madison County in September 2016, a little more than two weeks after her baby was born. Derleth remained on the run with the two children for about a week and was found in West Virginia.
He had been under a restraining order to keep away from Katherine and her baby while the baby’s paternity test was being conducted. Katherine gave birth as Bond County officials were investigating Derleth.
Bauer would not say if Derleth is the father of Katherine’s baby.
As of Tuesday, Derleth was still being held in the Madison County Jail, where he has been since he was extradited from West Virginia in September 2016.