KINGMAN — The continuation of a settlement conference was held Friday for a Mohave Valley man charged with 35 felony counts.
Superior Court Judge Billy Sipe Jr. explained a slightly lower plea offer from prosecutors for their case against Cameron Charles Brush, 18.
Brush is charged in a 2020 case with 25 counts including sexual exploitation of a minor, sexual extortion, computer tampering and attempted sexual exploitation of a minor. Those incidents allegedly occurred between April and September 2019.
Brush also is charged in another 2019 case with 10 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor for allegedly hacking a girl’s computer and possessing child pornography.
Brush’s attorney, Robin Puchek, offered a prison sentence of about five years, which Deputy Mohave County Attorney Greg McPhillips flatly refused, arguing that there were multiple victims.
Puchek brought up three mitigating points including that the 15- to 17-year-old girls knowingly and willingly posted nude pictures of themselves and pictures of them having sex on the internet.
Puchek also said Arizona has one of the most severe sentencing ranges in the nation for sex crimes. The last point was that only a third of 1% of the pictures on Brush’s phone were of child pornography.
McPhillips countered that Brush took advantage of the girls by going a step further and demanding additional pictures from the girls, who put the pictures on their phones or in the cloud.
The prosecutor previously offered a stipulated 15-year prison sentence or a sentencing range from three to 20 1/2 years. Brush would be placed on lifetime probation following the sentences.
McPhillips agreed to a new offer where Brush would plead guilty to nine of the counts and be sentenced to three to 15 1/2 years in prison. The more realistic sentence would be eight to 15 1/2 years in prison, he said.
That offer would expire by Brush’s next court date, which is set for Thursday before Superior Court Judge Doug Camacho, who is the assigned judge.
At the previous settlement conference, Sipe told Brush that he could face from 131 to 395 years in prison if convicted of all 25 counts in the 2020 case.
He also could be sentenced from 100 to 240 years in prison if convicted of all 10 charges in the 2019 case. Sipe warned that Brush likely would face life in prison if convicted at trial.
Sheriff’s detectives began an investigation Aug. 19 after a report from a 17-year-old girl who said her social media account had been hacked and inappropriate photos removed from her account, according to the sheriff’s office.
The hacker threatened to release the girl’s photos unless she gave him access to other photos and videos. Detectives traced the internet protocol addresses to two computers where Brush lived.
The 10 charges in the 2019 case stem from his arrest Sept. 12, when his cell phone and computers were seized. Forensic examination of the electronic devices uncovered multiple images of child pornography. Brush allegedly hacked into numerous other social media accounts of juveniles and possessed photos of about 50 people, MCSO reported.