Chesterton Tribune



South Haven man charged with child molesting and rape

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A South Haven man has been charged with two counts of child molesting and one of rape, after the friend of his niece accused him of several instances of intimate contact with her between May 2015 and September 2016.

Robert Santiago, 52, of 756 Juniper Road, was charged last week, according to documents released by the Porter County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

According to the probable cause affidavit filed by the Porter County Sheriff’s Police, in January the girl’s father contacted the PCSP after his daughter told him that Santiago had had sexual contact with her on multiple occasions. In a subsequent interview with an investigator, the girl recalled a specific instance in the summer of 2015 when she spent the night at the home of her friend, Santiago’s niece, at which time he took her to a spare bedroom and performed a sex act on her, the affidavit stated.

Later the same summer, the girl advised, Santiago invited her to visit his house, saying that his niece was going to be there. Santiago then picked her up and brought her to his residence--where the girl found that neither Santiago’s niece nor his wife was present--and then again forced himself on her, the girl advised.

The girl told investigators that she “ultimately complied” with Santiago’s instruction to “undress” because “she was fearful that refusal would result in the termination of her being friends” with Santiago’s niece.

Santiago is charged with one count of Level 1 child molesting, punishable by a term of 20 to 40 years; one count of Level 3 rape, punishable by a term of three to 16 years; and one count of Level 4 child molesting, punishable by a term of two to 12 years.



Posted 6/20/2018







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