Man gets 5 years for 2006 sexual assault of 13-year-old girl in Ford Heights

MARKHAM (STMW) - A south suburban man has been sentenced to five years in prison for sexually assaulting a teenage girl in Ford Heights nearly 10 years ago.

Marquis Deering, 33, pleaded guilty Wednesday to one count of criminal sexual assault, according to Cook County court records. Judge Luciano Panici sentenced him to five years.

Deering was charged in March 2010 after the Cook County sheriff’s office found a criminal sexual assault kit in an evidence room at the Ford Heights Police Department, according to the sheriff’s office. The sheriff’s office had taken over the south suburb’s police department in 2008 after the village could not afford to pay its officers.

The victim, who was 13 at the time, told investigators that in January 2006, she was walking with a friend in Ford Heights when Deering pulled up in a white van and invited her to ride with him, according to the sheriff’s office. She told him she couldn’t because she had to be home in an hour, but he said she’d be back by then.

Once the girl was in the van, Deering handed her a cup of suspected alcoholic beverages, according to the statement. She initially refused to drink it, but he forced it to her mouth.

The girl remembered going in and out of consciousness, and Deering driving her to a home in Chicago Heights, where he sexually assaulted her, according to police. He then drove her back to Ford Heights and dropped her off with friends, telling them she needed a shower.

When she got home, the girl told her family what had happened and they took her to St. James Hospital in Chicago Heights, where a police report was taken. The rape kit laid in an evidence room at the Ford Heights police station until May 2009, when the sheriff’s office discovered the evidence and submitted it to the Illinois State Police crime lab for testing. The test matched Deering.

Deering has been arrested at least 15 times since 2001, including arrests for unlawful use of a weapon, resisting arrest, drug possession and aggravated vehicular hijacking.

He will receive credit for 90 days served in the Cook County jail, and will be under supervised release for three years after his release from prison.

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