Search warrants reveal new information in the sex crimes case against Saginaw priest

Fr. DeLand in court.PNG

The Saginaw County priest charged with sex crimes will be back in court Wednesday.

Father Robert Deland is charged with two separate cases of sexual misconduct involving a man and a teenage boy.

Newly obtained search warrants, are revealing more information about what led to those charges.

According to the search warrants, the parents of the teen Father Deland is accused of sexually abusing, say he was grooming their son for a relationship; touching him inappropriately, constantly contacting him, giving him gifts and telling him he loved him.

Search warrants say the teenage victim's parents contacted the police back in November 2017 alleging suspicious behavior against their son by Father Bob while serving community service with the former priest.

The warrants detail several encounters between Father Bob and the teenager where Father Bob allegedly inappropriately touched the teen, offering him drugs, and asking him what kinds of sexual activity he preferred.

According to police, they believe Father Bob was grooming the boy for a sexual relationship.

Documents also detail Deland encouraging the teenager to watch gay porn and masturbate.

The teenager told police, Deland's behavior "freaked him out".

After a months long investigation from November 2017 to February 2018, Deland was arrested on criminal sexual conduct charges.

Father Deland will appear for several preliminary exams this week, the first is Wednesday at 9 a.m.

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