Coast Guardsman stationed in Port Angeles charged with child rape

PORT ANGELES — A Coast Guard petty officer first class has been charged with second-degree child rape and first-degree incest.

Brandyn Miles Sampson, 37, is stationed at Coast Guard Air Station/Sector Field Office Port Angeles on Ediz Hook. He has served in the Coast Guard for 18 years.

He was charged Friday with raping a minor between May 9, 2018 and May 8 2019 when she was between 12-14 years old. He remained Saturday in the Clallam County jail on $250,000 bail.

Sampson will be arraigned 1:30 p.m. this coming Friday in Superior Court.

The two charges filed Friday against Sampson are child rape- and incest-domestic violence and include special allegations that he violated his position of trust and took part in an ongoing pattern of abuse of a minor.

The rape charge carries a maximum penalty of life in prison and the incest charge a maximum 10-year sentence.

According to the probable cause statement the girl, now in her mid-teens, has alleged Sampson repeatedly assaulted her beginning before the age of 12 and continuing until a year or two ago, according to the statement, written by Port Angeles Police Detective Sgt. David Arand.

The alleged assaults took place in many cities over the years, she said.

In arguing Wednesday for $250,000 bail, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Matthew Roberson said that Sampson did not have a criminal history but that second-degree child rape is a Class A felony, that it’s considered a violent offense and that Sampson had engaged in a pattern of raping the alleged victim.

In setting bail Wednesday, Superior Court Judge Brent Basden said he is concerned about Sampson intimidating the alleged victim.

“The victim in this case has experienced periods of fear and, according to her at least, consenting to the behavior out of that fear, and that’s reiterated in the police reports in terms of their fear of what would happen if he is released, and that’s based on their experience in interacting with Mr. Sampson,” Basden said.

Port Angeles lawyer Karen Unger, representing Sampson on Friday, said the bail was “extraordinarily high” and that Sampson is a member in of the Coast Guard in good standing.

“I understand the charges,” Unger said.

“He’s not guilty until somebody proves him guilty or he pleads guilty.

“There’s a presumption that he’s to be released on his own recognizance unless the court finds that he’s either a flight risk or a danger to the community,” she said.

“I would like to also mention that these allegations have come out in the context of what I’ve been led to understand was a very contentious divorce that took over three years to resolve.”

Basden said he considered those factors.

“I don’t believe it’s necessary at this point to change my analysis,” he said.

A Coast Guard lawyer has attended Sampson’s two court hearings, held via Zoom.

“The legal team is more or less in a monitoring role because it’s a state case,” Petty Officer Steve Strohmaier said Friday.

Sampson will continue to receive his military pay, Strohmaier said.

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Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at pgottlieb@ peninsuladailynews.com.

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