August 30, 2019
JOLIET – Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow has announced that a judge today found Chandel Dirkans, 37, guilty of multiple criminal sexual assaults against a Joliet teenager in 2015. Circuit Court Judge David Carlson found Dirkans guilty on all 17 counts, including 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault, 5 counts of criminal sexual assault, 1 count of aggravated unlawful restraint, and 1 count of aggravated domestic battery against the female juvenile, who was 16 at the time, inside the home in which they both resided on the 600 block of Grant Street.
The decision followed a four-day bench trial. Dirkans, the brother of the victim’s stepmother, sexually assaulted the teenager five times over a nearly three-hour period on November 5, 2015, while other family members were at work. The victim testified that Dirkans placed her in a chokehold and dragged her into an upstairs bedroom, at which time she lost consciousness. After she regained consciousness, Dirkans said to her, “You’re either going to let me F*** you, or I’m going to kill you.” He then proceeded to sexually assault her while wielding a black-handled knife.
The victim further testified that Dirkans led her downstairs to the kitchen, where he grabbed a red-handled knife and plastic wrap and sexually assaulted her twice, utilizing the plastic wrap as a condom. Dirkans then led the victim to the basement where his bedroom was located, and twice sexually assaulted her.
Following the assaults, Dirkans forced the victim into a vehicle and drove her around. He drove her back to the residence and talked about killing her as they sat parked in the driveway. He eventually released her from the vehicle. Dirkans surrendered to police after a multiple-hours standoff during which he had barricaded himself in the home.
“There is a special place in Hell reserved for Chandel Dirkans for brutally sexually assaulting and terrorizing a member of his own family within the walls of her own home, which should be a place of safety and comfort,” said State’s Attorney Glasgow. “This demonic assault violated every tenet of human decency when he repeatedly brutalized this young teenage girl on every level of her home. Just as this young woman must live with the effects of his cruel and inhuman conduct for the rest of her life, Dirkans should spend his days behind the cold steel bars of a prison cell for his barbaric and savage conduct.”
At the time of the assaults, Dirkans was on parole for a 2009 conviction for residential burglary. He also had previous convictions for unlawful use or possession of a weapon by a felon, robbery and burglary.
Dirkans is eligible for up to 140 years in prison. The sentencing hearing has not yet been scheduled.
Glasgow credited prosecutors Kelly Tebo, Thomas Slazyk, and Elizabeth Domagalla for their hard work and dedication in obtaining the ruling in this case.