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'Don't take her back home': Spirit Lake man met Spokane teen on anonymous app, documents say

Spirit Lake police said they received information about the girl’s whereabouts and responded to the 6100 block of West Madison Street in Spirit Lake.
Credit: Spirit Lake Police

SPOKANE, Wash. — Court documents give insight into how a 53-year-old Spirit Lake man ended up living with a missing 17-year-old Spokane girl.

Michael Deherrera, 53, was arrested on July 13 and booked into the Kootenai County Jail for rape and providing shelter to a runaway juvenile. His bond is listed at $200,000 and as of Thrusday, he was 

Spirit Lake police said they received information about the girl’s whereabouts and responded to the 6100 block of West Madison Street in Spirit Lake. The girl was reported missing three months prior.

According to court documents, the girl had called her family in Washington and told them she believed she was being taken advantage of by the man she was living with. 

Officers located Deherrera at his home and questioned him about the missing girl. He told police the girl had been living at his home for several months and officers found her a short time later, police said.

Court documents say the girl told police she met Deherrera on a social media app called 'Whisper,' which is allows users to post and share photos and videos anonymously. She said they met for the first time at a Spokane Valley hotel in March and April of 2021, documents say.

After they met, the girl said they eventually moved into a RV at the home on West Madison Street and started helping Deherrera with DoorDash deliveries, documents say. She told police she felt like Deherrera was using her, according to court records. 

The girl told police she had been having sex with Deherrera since they met, according to documents. 

Court documents said when officers spoke with Deherrera, he denied having a sexual relationship with the girl and claimed he didn't know she had been reported missing saying, "Now that's news." 

Deherrera claimed he met the girl on Craigslist after he place an ad to help him with DoorDash deliveries because he is partially disabled, documents say.

Court documents said police told Deherrera that they would likely have to return the girl back to her family or place her in care and Deherrera said, "Don't take her back home." He then told police about issues between the girl's sister and her mother and how those relationships were poor, documents say. 

Court documents said police determined there girl was effectively homeless and placed her into foster care.