Chicago man with 52 prior arrests charged with imprisoning 15-year-old girl in basement, raping her over 5 months

May 7, 2024 | Political News

A 48-year-old Chicago man has been arrested after allegedly kidnapping a 15-year-old girl and holding her captive in his basement for months, where he repeatedly drugged and raped her.

Derek Swift, who has 52 prior arrests, was subsequently charged with aggravated kidnapping, kidnapping, criminal sexual assault, and aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

According to CBS News, the victim was walking home on December 6, 2023 when Swift pulled up beside her and offered a ride. Once inside the vehicle, he allegedly forced her to drink alcohol and take pills.

After falling unconscious, the girl woke up in Swift's bed; she was naked.

Over the following five months, he allegedly locked her in the basement of his home on Chicago's south side and continued the cycle of abuse.

She was given a phone, but instructed only to use it when Swift called. He threatened to kill her if she dared phone or text anyone else to ask for help.

On April 29, however, after discovering a piece of mail that contained Swift's address, she called police and they promptly rescued her from the situation.

As CWBChicago reports, Swift soon surrendered to police, and while he admitted to picking the victim up that day, he claimed he believed she was 20 years old, and that the sex they had was consensual.

The victim, who turned 16 while locked in Swift's basement, told prosecutors that she tried to escape on two occasions, but was forcibly denied both times, her captor striking her across the face and shoving her into the wall.

“She's now a child who had been in this basement, fed pills, raped every day, and threatened that he would kill her, threatened he would kill her loved ones,” Assistant State’s Attorney Anne McCord lamented. “She didn't say anything, but how can she? She is a child. She is a child who was being traumatized in the most unimaginable way.”

Swift is currently being held at Cook County Jail after being deemed a safety risk by Judge Susana Ortiz. He is scheduled to appear in court on May 21.