AG’s Office, Jefferson County DA Bob Wortham Obtain Conviction, 60-Year Prison Sentence in Sex Trafficking Case Involving Women and Underage Victims
AUSTIN, TX – As a result of a joint effort by his office and the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office, Attorney General Ken Paxton today announced that a jury found Johnny Ray Matlock guilty on charges of continuous trafficking of persons, a first-degree felony. Matlock waived his right to appeal and accepted a 60-year prison sentence, which is the equivalent of a life sentence in Texas.
Attorney General Paxton’s Human Trafficking and Transnational/Organized Crime section, led by Deputy Criminal Chief Kirsta Melton, was invited by District Attorney Wortham to partner with his office on Jefferson County’s first human trafficking case. Assistant District Attorney Kimberly Pipkin worked with Melton on the trial.
“This collaboration between my office and the district attorney’s office in Jefferson County is an outstanding example of how we’re fighting to ensure that justice is served upon those who commit the despicable crime of sex trafficking,” Attorney General Paxton said. “I want to thank the prosecutors and law enforcement agents for their efforts on this investigation to put away a despicable human trafficker.”
Last March, a grand jury indicted Matlock, of Silsbee, on charges he used social media and apps to recruit two underage girls and two women, causing them to be victims of sex trafficking. In court today, Matlock also agreed to plead guilty to a felony charge of possession of a firearm. A 10-year sentence for that will run concurrently with his sentence on human trafficking.
In July, a joint effort by the attorney general’s human trafficking unit, the Travis County District Attorney’s office and the Texas Department of Public Safety culminated in a 40-year prison sentence for the trafficker of a 14-year-old girl.
Attorney General Paxton has made combating human trafficking a top priority. Two years ago, he launched his office’s Human Trafficking and Transnational/Organized Crime section, which prosecutes human traffickers across the state. In April, the section’s prosecution of Backpage.com resulted in the company pleading guilty to human trafficking in Texas and its CEO, Carl Ferrer, pleading guilty to money laundering. The attorney general’s office also assisted the U.S. Department of Justice with permanently shutting down the website, which was considered the largest online sex trafficking marketplace in the world.
Man wanted for sexual battery and
Child Abuse captured in Mexico after
27 years on the run
Tuesday, July 31, 2018
A fugitive is back in the U.S. after he had been hiding in Mexico for 27 years.
Earl Jay Slaton, 72, was seen in his mugshot wearing oxygen tubes.
Slaton was wanted out of Florida for sexual battery of a victim under the age of 18 and aggravated child abuse.
A warrant was issued for Slaton’s arrest in 1990.
Lee County Sheriff’s Office and U.S. Marshals detective Rich White told ABC News it is common for the departments to cycle through old files to see if there are ever new leads. He said that Slaton’s case is the oldest file in their memory.
Investigators said a tip led to his arrest in a small town outside Mexico City, where he was living with his new wife.
Slaton is being held without bond at a Florida jail.
Biker Group Condemns Round Rock
Members Charged With Child Abuse
AUSTIN, TX — The Bikers Against Child Abuse organization released a statement Wednesday condemning the alleged actions of two of its former members in Round Rock related to child abuse.
“The B.A.C.A. Nation is deeply saddened and distressed to have learned that two of its former members, individuals licensed by the State of Texas as foster providers, were charged with numerous criminal acts against the children the state entrusted to their care,” read a prepared statement sent to Patch. “The reported actions of these individuals not only violates the core of our organization’s mission, which is to empower abused children to not fear the world in which they live, but it violated the very trust afforded foster providers and caregivers.”
Daniel Rodriguez and Shirley Rodriguez have been charged with two counts of injury to a child, according to Williamson County Sheriff Robert Chody. An arrest affidavit details that the woman, 42, slapped one of the three adopted children before force-feeding the child, and is also alleged to have sent the man, 42, videos of the act, according to the report.
Additionally, Shirley Rodriguez was charged with two new counts of indecency with a child, according to the affidavit. She is accused of touching two of the children inappropriately while showering with them while simultaneously participating in a video call with her husband, according to the affidavit.
The woman charged with a total of nine counts of indecency with a child, two counts of injury to a child and aggravated assault, according to jail records. For his part, Daniel Rodriguez was charged with seven counts of indecency with a child and three counts of injury to a child. Both are being held at the Williamson County Jail as of Tuesday, with bail set for the man at $1.45 million and for the woman at $1.82 million, records indicate.
BACA, the nonprofit group to which both belonged, has several regional bases of operation that include one in Central Texas. The group was founded in 1995 by John Paul “Chief” Lilly in Provo, Utah. Chief is a licensed clinical social worker and registered play therapist/supervisor, according to the group’s Wikipedia page. The group is now in 48 states and nine countries, according to the page.
In the press release, BACA described a thorough background check members undergo before joining the group: “Each and every member of the B.A.C.A. organization is thoroughly vetted before they are allowed to be involved with children. This vetting process includes going through criminal background checks on local and federal levels, and strictly adhering to policies, procedures and the code of conduct, which ensures its members are never alone with a child.”
Upon learning of the charges against the Rodriguez’, their membership in BACA was immediately terminated, officials said: “The moment B.A.C.A. became aware of the allegations, local and State Leadership moved swiftly against these individuals and removed them permanently from the organization.”
Spokane Valley man faces Child Abuse charges; Child reportedly records
SPOKANE, WA – A Spokane Valley man is facing serious charges of child abuse after police say his daughter recorded him attacking her at home — an attack that was reportedly so violent, the man broke his hand from hitting her so hard.
The video came to light after Brian Loss was arrested on June 20 for 3rd degree assault-domestic violence against his 16-year-old daughter.
Court documents say Loss went to pick up his daughter in Spokane County to give her a ride. She told police she jumped on the hood of his vehicle to avoid being left behind and he reportedly drove off with her on the hood, swerving in an attempt to knock her off. The child did eventually fall off the hood, according to police.
Loss appeared in court at the end of June and was then released on his own recognizance, but a domestic violence no contact order was issued.
During the investigation, police say they obtained a video of a December 5, 2017, assault by Loss at his residence. It was during that assault that police say Loss broke his hand during the beating. He and his daughter later went to an urgent care to have a cast put on it.
Documents also say that Loss violated the domestic violence no contact order on July 1. He was arrested and appeared in court on Tuesday.
Loss is charged with third degree assault and witness tampering, third degree child rape, third degree child molestation and harassment.