MEHLVILLE, Mo. (KMOV.com) – A man accused of sexually assaulting an 11-year-old girl in Mehlville was taken into custody in south St. Louis on Tuesday morning.
Larry Alverson, 41, of Belleville is charged with one count of first degree burglary, three counts of statutory sodomy of a child under 12 with a weapon, and three counts of armed criminal action.
Investigators say the incident began when the victim, her two male siblings, and her mother were shopping at Shop ‘n Save. While they were shopping, the victim felt uncomfortable because Alverson up against her twice while walking around the store.
While the girl and her family were leaving, she noticed Alverson staring at her while sitting in a black two-door vehicle. As they left, the suspect followed them home and was seen driving around their neighborhood several times.
Between 1:00 a.m. and 2:00 a.m., Alverson broke into the victim's bedroom, which she shared with her brothers. The suspect threatened he would kill their family if any of them made any noises. He then allegedly sexually assaulted the 11-year-old girl.
The children alerted the parents the next morning as the family was on their way to get breakfast together. The children say they waited until they were out of the house to tell their parents because they were afraid Alverson may have still been hiding in the house.
The mother then called 911 and took her daughter to the hospital. The Crimes Against Persons Unit was activated and is handling the investigation. Surveillance video of a man matching the description of the suspect was found in Shop ‘n Save's archives.
"You never want your child or anybody to go through that," said Sgt. Brian Schellman with St. Louis County Police. "It's extremely disturbing that we have a predator that we believe is out there, and that's why we're asking for the public's help."
St. Louis County Police said Alverson was convicted for a previous sexual assault and sentenced to 2.5 years in prison, but got out after four months on probation. St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said Alverson cut off his ankle bracelet shortly before sexually assaulting the 11-year-old victim in Mehlville.
Alverson is being held on a $1 million cash-only bond.