SEQUIM — A Sequim man was formally charged Monday with molestation and six child-rape counts involving three girls ages 11-16.
Nathan A. Chavez, 30, was held in the Clallam County jail Monday on $250,000 bail.
He will be arraigned at 9 a.m. Friday in Superior Court on single charges of first-degree child rape and third-degree child molestation, two counts of second-degree child rape and three counts of third-degree child rape involving girls he allegedly abused from January 2011 through August 2016.
Chavez, a county resident for more than 20 years, was arrested without incident at noon Friday in the 100 block of Savannah Place in Sequim, authorities said.
Judge Chris Melly cited Chavez’s allegedly “predatory behavior” in setting the bail asked for by Deputy Criminal Prosecuting Attorney Michele Devlin.
Chavez, who works with heavy equipment, is married and has four children in the home, he told Melly.
Devlin said later Monday that there is no evidence Chavez has abused his own children.
But there could be more victims, she told Melly, adding later that authorities are continuing to investigate Chavez.
Two of the girls, one of whom was living in a Spokane foster home when she made the allegations against Chavez, had lived in Chavez’ home at the time of the rapes, Devlin said.
One rape allegedly occurred in a tree house on his property when the victim was 11, the girl told authorities, according to the criminal complaint against Chavez filed Monday in Superior Court.
The girl told authorities that Chavez impregnated her and that she miscarried when she was 12, according to the complaint.
The girl said Chavez had had sex with two of her friends, who discussed the incidents in Jan. 12 text messages that were saved as screen shots, according to the complaint.
“I can’t believe I let myself be in a sexual relationship with such an older, disgusting man,” the girl said in one of the messages.
“There are allegations that Mr. Chavez has drinking parties,” Devlin said Monday.
“Mr. Chavez would take the girls to secluded locations to have sex with them,” she said. “Indications are he was writing to one of them indicating how much he loves her.”
Chavez was involved with two of the girls at once, according to the complaint.
Chavez’s wife told authorities “she never had any direct knowledge of Nathan’s relationship with underage girls and declined to provide any statement,” according to the complaint.
A father of two of the alleged victims talked to Chavez, but Chavez’ wife “did not discuss the matter with [the father] or Nathan afterwards because she felt Nathan had already handled it,” the complaint said.
A sister of Chavez told authorities that Chavez provided alcohol to minors.
She said her brother has a drinking problem.
Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.