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Vancouver man, 21, accused of secretly taking nude photos of girls

By Jerzy Shedlock, Columbian Breaking News Reporter
Published: March 17, 2021, 5:48pm

A 21-year-old Vancouver man faces a slew of charges, including extortion and possessing sexually explicit images of minors, for allegedly taking nude photos of girls without their knowledge and then harassing them for more photos.

Damitre A. Wells made a first appearance March 12 in Clark County Superior Court. Judge John Fairgrieve set bail in the case at $20,000. Court records indicate Wells posted bail the same day. An arraignment hearing is scheduled for Friday.

Wells had been jailed on 11 allegations, including second-degree extortion, possession of child sex abuse imagery, first-degree voyeurism and cyberstalking.

Senior Deputy Prosecutor James Smith said in an email that Wells’ victims were a combination of neighbors, classmates and people he met online.

The case began about a year ago, on March 11, 2020, when a Mountain View High School student notified the school resource officer that she’d received two nude photos of herself over Instagram from an account named “Denzellbcurry,” according to a probable cause affidavit.

The person who sent the photos demanded nude pictures or they’d “expose” the victim, according to the affidavit. The school resource officer noted that the photos the girl received were taken outside her bedroom window without her knowledge; they also met the standard for child sex abuse imagery, as the girl was 15 at the time.

The officer wrote a search warrant to Instagram and discovered the account was tied to two other victims, who were similarly sent explicit photos of themselves on the same day and then threatened with exposure if they didn’t meet the suspect’s demands for more photos. The victims expressed being ashamed and scared, according to the affidavit.

Vancouver Police Department Digital Evidence Cybercrime Unit investigators eventually found two other accounts where the suspect demanded nude photos. As of last week, those additional victims had not been identified.

Columbian Breaking News Reporter