Pawn shop owner charged
By JESSIE STENSLAND
Whidbey News Times Assistant editor
December 16, 2008 · 4:12 PM
An Oak Harbor businessman is accused of raping a child and threatening another juvenile with a handgun, court documents state.
Prosecutors charged Jesse “Butch” Torres, a 70-year-old Oak Harbor man, in Island County Superior Court Dec. 3 with rape of a child in the second degree, rape of a child in the third degree and assault in the second degree with a deadly weapon.
Torres, the owner of Butch’s Jewelry and Loan, pleaded not guilty Monday. He’s being held in jail on $500,000 bail.
Oak Harbor Detective Mike Bailey investigated the case after a 17-year-old boy reported that Torres had raped his 16-year-old sister.
The girl told a detective that Torres had started molesting her when she was 8 years old and started raping her when she was 13, the report states. The girl claimed Torres raped her more than 100 times, Bailey wrote.
In an interview with detectives, Torres admitted that he started having sex with the girl when she was 13 years old, the report states. Torres said he was in love with the girl and wished he could marry her, Bailey wrote.
“Jesse told us that he knew what he was doing was wrong and that he is guilty of the crime,” Bailey wrote in the report.
In addition, Torres is accused of threatening a 17-year-old boy with a handgun. The boy reported that he and Torres got into an argument Nov. 29 and Torres pointed a handgun at him, the detective wrote.
Torres’ attorney, Bill Hawkins of Oak Harbor, said he couldn’t comment on the details of the case. He said Torres has owned the pawn shop in Oak Harbor for about 10 years.
If convicted of the charges, Torres could face more than 10 years in prison.Contact Whidbey News Times Assistant editor Jessie Stensland at firstname.lastname@example.org or 360.675.6611 ext. 5056.