PORTLAND (AP) — An explicit YouTube video seen by children at a middle school led to the arrest of four Portland men accused of sexually abusing two girls.
A teacher heard chatter about the video in the halls of Centennial Middle School in Gresham and found a link to it on a student’s Facebook page. The teacher recognized one of the girls engaging in sex acts with adult men as a 12-year-old seventh-grader, guidance counselor David Qualheim told The Oregonian newspaper.
“It made me sick to think there are guys that old out there, encouraging that kind of behavior,” Qualheim said.
A Multnomah County grand jury on Tuesday indicted Cedrell Lyonell Washington, 20, Deshawn Ceville Rogers, 22, Nicholas Kelly Clisby, 23, and Terry Lamar Scott, 18, on felony charges, alleging the videotaping of the two girls occurred May 19. No details about the second girl were released.
Centennial Middle School alerted the state Department of Human Services and talked to the seventh-grader’s mother.
“We’ve suggested the mom keep her out the rest of the year,” Qualheim said, “because students were talking about the video.”
School Principal Doug Cook said later Thursday that the school has maintained contact with the girl’s mother “to allow her to share any concerns with us,” and that the school would welcome the girl to continue classes this year if she wants.
One of the four suspects is a documented member of the Unthank Park Hustlers street gang, and police said investigators are seeing an increase in gang members involved in the sexual exploitation of young women and teenage girls to make money.
Washington pleaded not guilty to charges including using a child in the display of sexually explicit conduct, encouraging child sex abuse, rape, sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a minor.
Rogers pleaded not guilty to using a child in display of sexually explicit conduct, encouraging child sex abuse, possession of materials depicting sexually explicit conduct of a child, coercion and endangering the welfare of a minor.
Scott is accused of using a child in display of sexually explicit conduct, endangering a minor, rape and other charges.
Clisby is accused of using a child in the display of sexually explicit conduct, sex abuse and endangering the welfare of a minor.
“It’s extremely outrageous,” said Portland police Capt. Kevin Modica, who oversees the Multnomah County Child Abuse Team, which investigated the case. “A horrible crime was committed against vulnerable teenagers. I feel very disgusted that this happened in our community. The victims may never recover from this.”