A 41-year-old Florida man used online chat rooms in 2002 and 2003 to lure in a 12-year-old Troy boy and sexually assault him, police say.
Troy police said they launched an investigation into Derrick R. Sepp after he was sentenced in 2008 for sex crimes against another 12-year-old child in Polk County, Florida.
The Troy victim, now an adult, read about Sepp’s case online and contacted the Troy police in 2014 about what he said allegedly happened between him and Sepp.
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Detectives found Sepp would often use the name “Erik” in chat rooms and social media. He would befriend young boys and convince them to meet up with him in person, according to investigators.
“The inherent innocence of children is something we should all work to protect,” Chief Parsons said in a news release. “The crimes committed to destroy that innocence is deplorable and the Troy Police Department will ensure allegations of those crimes are investigated to the fullest. In an effort to prevent crimes like this occurring in the future, I encourage parents to take some time to speak with their children about the dangers of meeting people online.”
Sepp is facing three counts of predatory criminal sexual assault, which carries a sentence of six to 30 years in prison on each count and one count of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, which carries a sentence of three to seven years in prison.
He was arrested in Florida by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office last Wednesday.
Anyone who believes they had similar experiences with Sepp are asked to contact their local police department or the Troy Police Department at 618-667-6731.