Port Angeles man faces 29 charges, including child rape counts

By Jeremy Schwartz
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — A Port Angeles man is set to face a March 24 jury trial after being accused of having sex with two preteen girls when he was 17 and possessing pornography showing children as young as 6 in sexual situations.

John Holly Whitman, 19, has been accused of 29 felony and misdemeanor charges, including multiple counts of child rape, child molestation, possessing child pornography and communicating with minors about sex acts, according to Clallam County Superior Court documents.

Clallam County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Alexandrea Schodowski handed down 24 charges Jan. 9, according to Superior Court records, and added five last Friday.

Whitman was charged Jan. 9 with one count each of first-degree child molestation and tampering with a witness and 11 counts each of possessing depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct and communicating with a minor for immoral purposes.

Various charges

He was charged Friday with one count of second-degree child molestation and four counts of second-degree rape of a child, after police conducted more interviews with the second alleged victim.

Whitman is set to appear in Superior Court for a case status hearing for his March trial Feb. 27.

According to Port Angeles police accounts, Whitman told detectives after his arrest Jan. 6 that he had had sex with two girls, one when she was 11 and the other when she was 12, and had also communicated with one of them via Facebook about the sexual encounters.

Superior Court Judge Erik Rohrer set a bond of $2,500 Jan. 7.

Whitman posted bond and was released from custody Jan. 9.

Police said Whitman had had sex with one of the girls four times between March and August 2012.

Whitman also allegedly told the other girl to delete all their Facebook communications, in which they discussed sex acts between the two, because the police were after him and to deny everything if asked about what happened, according to police accounts.

Police said Whitman told investigators these girls, who were roughly 59 and 48 months younger than he was, were the only underage girls he has had sex with and that he knew it was wrong.

Following a search of Whitman’s home, police said they found a digital memory card containing photographs of young boys and girls between 6 and 10 years old performing sex acts.

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Reporter Jeremy Schwartz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5074, or at jschwartz@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: February 18. 2014 5:27PM
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