An eastern Oregon man has been charged after federal prosecutors say he sexually abused two minors he met on Snapchat and took them across state lines. He now faces up to life in prison.
The Department of Justice said Albert Wayne Johnson, 40, of La Grande is charged with coercing and enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity and transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual conduct.
The investigation started on Aug. 8 when, according to DOJ, the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office responded to a call of two minors abandoned at Barton Park in Boring.
The children allegedly told deputies they met Johnson on Snapchat and that he had taken them from Washington State through Idaho and into Oregon. They children allegedly claimed that Johnson abused them both multiple times during the trip.
Stops along the way included a motel in Othello, Wash., and a campground in La Grande, the DOJ alleges. Johnson then allegedly left he children at a campsite in Barton Park and did not return.
During the investigation, Othello Police allegedly obtained surveillance video of Johnson and the two children at the motel there.
Johnson was arrested by multiple agencies at his home in La Grande on Aug. 30. He had an outstanding parole violation warrant.
DOJ says coercing and enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity and transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual conduct are both punishable by up to life in prison with 10-year mandatory minimum sentences per count of conviction.
Anyone who has information about the physical or online exploitation of children are encouraged to call the FBI at (503) 224-4181 or submit a tip online at tips.fbi.gov.
Cases like this always serve as a reminder for parents to be aware of what their kids are doing online and knowing who they are interacting with.