A Granite City man will spend six years in prison for kidnapping his 13-year-old stepdaughter and her newborn son, a Madison County judge ruled.
Christopher Derleth, 40, kidnapped his stepdaughter, Katherine Derleth, and her infant son Christopher, from a foster home in rural Madison County in September 2016. He was charged with aggravated kidnapping and child abduction after the three were found in West Virginia a week later. Madison County Judge Richard Tognarelli sentenced him Nov. 16 to six years in prison for kidnapping and three for abduction, to be served at the same time.
The six-year Madison County sentence however, is supplemental to the 45 years Derleth will spend in prison for perjury and sexually abusing a child, whose identity has not been released, in Bond County. That sentence, in a separate case from the kidnapping charges, came down in early October.
Madison County State’s Attorney Tom Gibbons said they worked with Bond County State’s Attorney Christopher Bauer throughout the process. Both Bauer and Gibbons agreed to prosecute the Bond County case first, to ensure a “very severe sentence,” Gibbons said.
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“It’s a really sad and terrible case,” Gibbons said.
Charges described Katherine as suffering from a “severe or profound intellectual disability.” Derleth had been under a restraining order to stray away from Katherine and the baby while the baby’s paternity test was conducted. Katherine gave birth as Bond County officials investigated Derleth. Bond County State’s Attorney Christopher Bauer would not say if Derleth is the father of Katherine’s baby.
Overall, Derleth will spend 51 years in prison, with the convictions from both counties combined.
Derleth’s public defender, Neil Hawkins, did not respond for comment Monday.