Man accused of sexually abusing teenage girls in Washington Co.
PORTLAND, Ore. – A 38-year-old is accused of sexually abusing two teenage girls - one with developmental disabilities - in the Washington County area, and investigators say there could be more victims.
Rusty Hendrickson, 38, of Sutherlin, was arrested on Saturday. He was booked into the Douglas County Jail on three counts each of 2nd and 3rd-degree sex abuse.
He has since posted bail and has been released.
Washington County sheriff’s detectives first received information in June 2017 that a man had sexual contact with a developmentally-disabled girl diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy.
The girl's parents found "alarming conversations" on her phone, and in turn notified law enforcement.
After further investigation, they learned that the same suspect had a similar encounter with a second teenage girl in the Washington County area.
Washington County Deputy Jeff Talbot says the girls were 16 and 17 years old when the alleged abuse occurred.
"Any time that children are preyed upon and victimized is sad and a tragedy for everyone in the community," Talbot said.
Detectives say Hendrickson met the girls on social media, specifically through Google Hangouts, and two lesser known applications, Chatib and Chatiw. They are available on mobile devices or computers.
According to Chatib and Chatiw, users can access free chat rooms and chat online with no registration. All that is required to join is entering a username or nickname, an age, gender and location. No verification is required.
"It's a good reminder for parents to be aware of their children's online activities," Talbot said, "both on computers, as well as what applications are on their cell phones."
A records check revealed that Hendrickson does not have a criminal history.
Talbot says the alleged crimes occurred in Washington County, and until recently Hendrickson lived in Cornelius. He now lives in Sutherlin.
Former neighbors who talked on the condition of anonymity said Hendrickson was "weird" and "odd."
Hendrickson is scheduled to be arraigned Dec. 20 in Washington County, where the case will be tried.
Detectives are concerned that there could be other victims in the case. If you have any helpful information, call (503) 846-2700.