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WINTHROP HARBOR, IL — A 17-year-old has been arrested and charged with sexually abusing children at his mother’s day care.

Brett Degler has been accused of sexually abusing three young girls, two 11-year-olds and a 4-year-old, since November of last year.

A two week police investigation began after the 4-year-old told her parents that it hurt to urinate and that “Brett did it.” Her parents took her to the hospital and then contacted police when it was revealed the girl had been sexually assaulted.

The girl was able to detail when and how she was abused durin an interview that lead police to a second victim. Degler admitted to assaulting a third victim during a police interview following his arrest a day later. The abuse had been ongoing for at least five months and took place when his mother was in another room of the house or at the store.

His mother, Cheryl Degler, has run a residential day-care for nearly 30 years and p0lice say she has cared for the children of children she cared for in the past. She is not being charged and was completely unaware of the abuse. She also voluntarily terminated her day-care license when police informed her of what her son had been up to.

Degler is facing charges of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child and aggravated criminal sexual abuse. He is being held in Lake County Jail in lieu of $500,000 bail. I feel terrible for the victims and their families, but I also feel bad for poor Cheryl. How do you even recover from the fact that your life was ruined by your own son raping children you were caring for under your own roof?

Sadly, Degler isn’t the first teen we have featured on D’D accused of molesting children at a day care and he won’t be the last. He joins Cody Pope and our old friend Cesar Monarrez, who I had almost forgotten about. For some of you new to D’D, the comments on the Monarrez story are worth checking out.

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