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Man arrested on child rape charges arrested on same charge last year

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A 24-year-old man arrested this week on charges of raping a disabled teen had been arrested for the same thing last year.

Montrell Hillard was taken into custody at his Memphis apartment Friday.

He was first arrested last April, accused of raping a 14-year-old girl repeatedly over the course of two years, beginning when she was 12.

Friday, U.S. Marshals and Memphis Police task forces arrested Hillard again at an apartment complex on Oakmont Place.

“It was about 15, 16 U.S. Marshals," said Hillard's neighbor, Shanterria Freeman. “They came from every which way.”

U.S. Marshals say Hillard is charged with two counts of rape of a child, but it’s unclear if those are new charges because court records only show a charge for failure to appear in court on rape charges.

Neighbors say the apartment complex where Hillard lives is full of kids, and they had no idea an accused child rapist was living right next door.

“I didn’t know he was wanted for that," Freeman said. “That’s sad.”

Police say Hillard knew the girl’s mother and that the sexual abuse began in 2015. But it wasn’t until the teen asked her mom about birth control years later that Hillard was arrested.

The girl told investigators she kept it a secret because Hillard was violent.

WREG spoke to Nicole Fanin, the regional director of Youth Villages, in 2018 when Hillard was first arrested.

“Bad things happen, and bad things happen to good parents," she said. "Even with the appropriate oversight there's no guarantee, but you have to have the dialogue.”

U.S. Marshals also arrested two other men this week accused of sex crimes.

Fredrick Rodgers, 40, is charged with aggravated rape and kidnapping, and Kenneth Gaines, 36, is charged with rape of a child, statutory rape by an authority figure and sexual battery.

"There will be some type of lasting impact tied to suffering this type of abuse," Fanin said. "Children should be able to maintain that innocence."

Hillard faces a judge Monday morning. Online court records don’t list any bond information for him.

Rodgers is being held on a $200,000 bond. Gaines’ bond is set at $150,000.

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