Digital Access

Digital Access
Access saukvalley.com and all Shaw Media Illinois content from all your digital devices and receive breaking news and updates from around the area.

Home Delivery

Home Delivery
Local news, prep sports, Chicago sports, local and regional entertainment, business, home and lifestyle, food, classified and more! News you use every day! Daily, Daily including the e-Edition or e-Edition only.

Text Alerts

Text Alerts
Choose your news! Select the text alerts you want to receive: breaking news, prep sports scores, school closings, weather, and more. Text alerts are a free service from SaukValley.com, but text rates may apply.

Email Newsletters

Email Newsletters
We'll deliver news & updates to your inbox. Sign up for free e-newsletters today.
State

Illinois state trooper charged with sexual assault

Alleged incident took place at area school

An Illinois State Police trooper was arrested on allegations he had inappropriate sexual contact with a pair of females – at least one of which was a minor – while he worked as a teacher at an area high school.

Trooper James T. Dierkes, 29, of Greenville, was charged Friday with one count each of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and criminal sexual assault for incidents that occurred in 2016 while he was employed at Vandalia Community High School, prior to his employment with state police in June 2018.

According to a statement, state police investigators looked into allegations made by a victim who stated she and Dierkes had “inappropriate sexual contact” on multiple occasions while he worked at the school. That investigation lead to a second victim who also alleged similar interactions with Dierkes.

Dierkes was taken into custody Friday and was immediately relieved of duty. He is being held at Fayette County Jail pending charges with a bond set at $1 million.

“Illinois State Police Special Agents treated the victim’s allegations as credible and within hours of disclosure initiated an investigation leading to these charges,” said ISP Director Brendan F. Kelly. “ISP agents are fiercely protective of brave crime victims and fiercely protective of the integrity of the Illinois State Police so we urge any victims to come forward.”

ISP is asking anyone with addition information to call 217-622-0924.

Loading more