DERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. - A Derry Township man whose wife turned him in to police because she allegedly discovered him naked as he videotaped a 4-year-old girl dancing in their basement was jailed on Tuesday on child abuse charges.
Thomas Deglau, 54, was charged by state police in Greensburg with aggravated indecent assault, sexual abuse of children, indecent assault and indecent exposure.
Deglau's wife, Sandra, turned over to Latrobe police videotapes that her husband allegedly filmed recently of the girl, whom the couple occasionally baby-sat.
According to Trooper Jason Swope, Sandra Deglau became suspicious when she awoke from a nap about 5:30 p.m. Saturday, went into the basement and found her husband, Thomas, videotaping the girl as she danced.
“(Mrs. Deglau) related that Thomas Deglau was not wearing any pants or underwear,” Swope wrote in an affidavit of probable cause filed before Derry District Judge Mark Bilik.
Sandra Deglau viewed the footage in the video camera her husband was using and found two other recordings her husband recently had taken of the victim, Swope said in the affidavit.
Having viewed alleged inappropriate contact between Deglau and the girl, Sandra Deglau took the videotapes to city police.
Latrobe police contacted state police because the village of McChesneytown, just outside of Latrobe, falls within state police jurisdiction.
“It takes a lot of courage to go against someone in your own family,” Pennsylvania State Police Trooper Brian Thomas said. “Had that not occurred, we may still not know about it.
Swope said in the affidavit that in an interview on Monday, Deglau confessed to videotaping the 4-year-old, sometimes when she was naked, and “doing this for sexual gratification.” Swope said Deglau admitted to sometimes “touching” the girl inappropriately.
News of what allegedly happened made its way next door to Mary Lowry’s Derry Township barber shop.
“He was a very nice guy. He talked a lot about his music,” Lowry said. "He came in, and it didn't matter who it was, he was very nice to them. If they were into music, that was right up his alley.”
Bilik ordered Deglau, who has no criminal record, held in the county jail in lieu of $50,000 bond pending a preliminary hearing on Jan. 22.
Channel 11’s news exchange partners at TribLIVE contributed to this report.
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