La Pine rape suspect in court; judge sets bail at $1 million

A La Pine man indicted last week on nearly 60 sex crimes dating back to 2003 was formally arraigned Monday with the judge setting bail at $1 million.

Rusty Allen Pugh made his first court appearance on the 31 new charges filed against earlier him this month after another alleged victim, a 16-year-old Deschutes County girl, came forward. He did not enter a plea.

Bend Police say five people so far have accused Pugh of various sex crimes dating back to 2003. Three women say they were abused as girls, the other two are 6 and 16-years-old. He was arraigned on 59 total charges.

Pugh, 47, was initially arrested on August 22 on five counts of rape after a two-month long investigation. At the time, police asked others with information regarding suspicious contact with Pugh to call in.  Since that date, detectives have received numerous follow up calls for investigation.

Pugh was released from jail with a GPS monitor after posting a $25,000 bail on August 27th. Over the next six days, police say three more victims reported Pugh as a suspect in various sex crimes between 2004 and August of 2019 that weren’t previously reported.

He was re-arrested and jailed after a traffic stop on August 28th.

Police say a 16-year-old Deschutes County girl came forward on Sept. 13th to report Pugh as a suspect in various crimes between 2009 and 2013 that had not yet been reported.

Bend Police Lt. Juli McConkey said two of the victims, Yamhill County women who are now 19 and 22-years-old, were abused in 2004.

“We’re sure there are more victims out there,” McConkey told Central Oregon Daily. “It’s just encouraging them to come forward.”

McConkey said Pugh was “definitely involved in these childrens’ lives.”

“It’s not a stranger and most of these types of offenses are where the suspect or alleged suspect would be in contact with people and groom them and give them access to the children,” she said.

The 59-count indictment includes five counts of first-degree rape, 27 counts of first-degree sex abuse, two counts of unlawful sexual penetration, 17 counts of first-degree sodomy and five counts of second-degree encouraging child sex abuse.

Police believe there might still be more victims who haven’t come forward. If you have any information, you’re asked to contact non-emergency dispatch at 541-693-6911.




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