Kingston landlord convicted of molestation, victims speak out

By  | 

MARSHALL COUNTY, OK -- Guilty. That is the verdict handed down Tuesday by a Marshall County jury in the case of a Kingston man charged with two counts of lewd molestation, but those are not the only crimes he is accused of. Kristen Shanahan spoke with two of the victims and brings us the interview you will only see on 12 News.

This is the first of four charges against 59-year-old Randolph Derebery. He has been arrested three times since April, accused of sexually molesting five different girls.

Randolph Derebery's two victims we will call Novell and Vernie -- to protect their identities -- say they felt relieved when they heard the words "guilty".

"I feel safe now. Knowing that he is guilty, like I don't have to worry about him getting out or get off on the other cases because he his guilty on ours," Novell said.

"Relieved, relaxed, calm," Vernie said.

Novell and Vernie were the first of 5 children to come forward alleging Derebery sexually molested them. They say facing him in court as they testified against him was one of the hardest things they have ever done.

"You just want to get out and run out of the room," Vernie said.

"It's just nerve racking," Novell said.

Their mother -- who we will call Denice -- says she is also relieved, but most of all proud of her girls for stepping up and speaking out.

"They've wrestled determining weather they even wanted to tell me, and I think all kids go through that. The most important thing is try to have an open communication with your kids," Denice said.

Denice says Derebery touched the girls inappropriately about a year ago. She says he never expected it from him because he was not only their landlord. but her best friend's husband.

"I never expected anything like this from him," Denice said.

Derebery bonded out several times after her girls came forward, after being arrested for other sex crimes against children. Now he is being held in the Marshall County Jail on a $1.9 million dollar bond.

"To me it communicated to our kids that it didn't matter, you know, if you had enough money you could get out anyway. I am so glad they finally set the bond high enough," Denice said.

Denice and her girls say they feel justice is served for them.

"Now we can move on with the healing process knowing justice will be served," Denice said.

They hope the other three victims will get their same sense of relief.

"Stay strong," Vernie said.

"They just have to stay strong that's all it is," Novell said.

We left a message with Derebery's attorney, Theresa McGehee.

Assistant District Attorney Heather Cooper says the jury came back with the guilty verdict after deliberating for just an hour and a half.

She says they recommended five years on each count.

Derebery will be sentenced in December.