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February 07, 2011 04:52 PM

Hennings Faces Rape, Sexual Contact Charges

Sioux Falls, SD


Sioux Falls Police arrested him for following young girls and making sexual gestures. Now, 66-year-old Vern Hennings faces a dozen more charges, including first degree rape.

Specifically, Hennings now faces 10 counts of sexual contact with a child under 16 and two counts of first degree rape with a victim less than 13 years old. Police say the new charges are all linked to an eight year old victim.

Vern Hennings made his first trip from the Minnehaha County Jail to a courtroom last week, facing eight counts of solicitation of a minor.

When questioned about following teenage girls and making sexual gestures, court papers say Hennings admitted he'd been doing it for 20 years.

Since he first appeared in court, more young girls have come forward. The new charges are connected to one of those victims, who happens to be a relative. According to the affidavit, the eight year old girl says Hennings molested her every time she and her sister slept at his home while their mother worked. The girl says he'd wake her in the middle of the night, remove her underwear and would kiss and touch her inappropriately. The girl says Hennings also removed his pajama pants and forced her to touch him.

The child also says Hennings would ask her to be his girlfriend when she'd sit on his lap, and that he told her not to tell anyone, because he would get into trouble.

A background check of Hennings shows no similar allegations. In fact, it lists just a couple driving infractions.

Caution: The content in the court papers below may be graphic.
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