A Kent man and his estranged wife filmed themselves raping a 4-year-old girl and traded Web images of the abuse with a man facing child-molestation charges in Southern California, King County prosecutors allege.
Brian Beston, 36, and Hollie Beston, 31, of Burien, were arrested by Seattle police last week after the FBI learned of the couple from the child-molestation suspect in San Diego, according to the charges filed Wednesday in King County Superior Court.
The Bestons have each been charged with first-degree child rape, first-degree child molestation, sexual exploitation of a minor and depictions of a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct. They are being held at the King County Jail on $500,000 each.
King County prosecutors say the unlikely tipster is a 38-year-old man, who San Diego authorities say is facing 42 years in prison for years of abusing a boy he was mentoring. The man, Richard Hockaday, reported the Bestons' alleged abuse "as part of his therapy," according to King County charging papers.
The San Diego man told federal investigators that he met the Bestons on Craigslist. Hockaday advertised himself as a single mother looking for parents in Seattle and San Diego with whom to carry out some sort of "fantasy," charging papers said.
Eventually Hockaday started talking to the couple about traveling to Seattle to have sex with the girl, charging papers said. Hockaday said that he watched Beston, who police say is 6 feet tall and 360 pounds, have sex with the small girl over a Webcam, according to court documents.
Hockaday said he received 40 to 50 pornographic images from the Bestons during the three months they were in contact, charging papers said.
After communicating with the Bestons for several weeks, Hockaday was arrested by San Diego police for investigation of sex crimes there. He's accused of sexually abusing a boy he was mentoring between 2003 and 2007, and the victim contacted police earlier this year to report the abuse, said George Modlin, a deputy district attorney in San Diego.
Hockaday is charged with nine felony counts.
Seattle police searched the Bestons' homes in Kent and Burien last Friday and confiscated computers, cameras, flash drives, cellphones and other electronics, court papers said.
Police believe the Bestons abused the girl for several months, charging papers said. Investigators spoke with Brian Beston and believe that he had sexual contact with the girl once or twice each week between June and late September or early October, charging papers said.
Hollie Beston is also accused of operating the camera and sending the images via a cellphone and the Internet. On her MySpace page, the woman describes herself as "a mommy" and a "proud parent."
Neither Brian nor Hollie Beston has a felony record, Senior Deputy Prosecutor Zachary Wagnild said. The Bestons will appear in court for arraignment on Nov. 10.
The child was taken into custody by state Child Protective Services. Investigators do not believe any other children were abused, said Seattle police spokesman Mark Jamieson.