The Watson man accused of killing his seven-year-old niece is changing his plea. Justin DeRyke now says he’s guilty. He stabbed Willow Long several times back in September then put her body in a garbage bag and dumped it near the Little Wabash River.
DeRyke was arrested days after the girl went missing and at that time, he admitted that he’d killed her to put her out of her misery. He’d claimed she fell on a pile of brush and got a branch lodged in her throat. DeRyke will spend the rest of his life behind bars.
Serving the areas of Alton, Godfrey, East Alton, Wood River, Roxana, Edwardsville, Jerseyville, Brighton, Bethalto, Grafton, Granite City, Hartford, Highland, Troy, Fairview Heights, Belleville and the surrounding cities.