DeKalb man formally denies child rape charges

SYCAMORE — A 27-year-old DeKalb man accused of sexually assaulting a six-year-old family member over the past three years formally pleaded not guilty Thursday.

Robert Aldape, of the 700 block of Kimberly Drive, was arraigned on 52 counts of predatory criminal sexual assault and seven counts of possession of child pornography.

He is accused of engaging in sexual contact with the family member since she was 3 years old, said Assistant State's Attorney Phil Montgomery. Aldape has admitted to raping the child on multiple occasions, including at his home, Montgomery said.

The sexual assault charges against Aldape involve one alleged victim.

DJ Tegeler, Aldape's attorney, said his client has a right to a jury trial and maintains his innocence.

"As in any case, it's an allegation the State has made that they have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt," Tegeler said. "I've not seen all the evidence at this point, but at this point, the intention is to plead not guilty."

Aldape faces between six and 30 years in prison for each count of which he is convicted. If convicted, Aldape also would be required to register as a sex offender for life. He is next due in court March 24.