Washington County man charged on suspicion of 6 felonies involving 17-year-old girl

Marquez Jessup. Photo: Washington County

LA VERKIN, Utah, Sept. 15, 2020 (Gephardt Daily) — A La Verkin man has been charged on suspicion of crimes against a 17-year-old girl.

Marquez Jessup, 27, was booked Monday into the Washington County Jail on suspicion of:

  • Three counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, a second-degree felony
  • Unlawful sexual conduct with a 16-17 year old, a third-degree felony
  • Sexual solicitation, a third-degree felony
  • Sexual extortion-coercion to distribute intimate image, a third-degree felony

According to a statement from the La Verkin Police Department, the victim was 17 at the time of the incidents.

“During the investigation, it was found that the victim was solicited by Marquez to send nude photographs of herself for money. Marquez later sexually solicited the victim for sexual intercourse.”

When Marquez made a subsequent request, she declined and blocked him on social media, the La Verkin Police statement says.

“After being told by the victim she didn’t want to continue communicating, Marquez started blackmailing the victim that the images initially sent would be posted on the Internet if she didn’t continue the arrangement,” the LVPD statement says.

“After Marquez made the threat to post the images, the victim looked into what would happen if someone posts intimate images of another person online and found the FBI web site. The victim made the choice to report the incident which was then referred to our office.”

La Verkin police interviewed the victim, and also questioned Jessup, the statement says.

A probable cause filed in the case says Jessup initially denied “hanging out” with the victim, but later confirmed it, and admitted to getting nude photos and videos, and sex.

“When asked about paying the victim for the images and videos he stated she asked him for money because she needed the money,” the charging document says.

Marquez then declined to answer further questions. He was booked into jail, and his bail was set at $10,000.


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