Crime

Everson sex offender sentenced for sexting teen girl

An Everson sex offender must serve two years in prison for sending sexual text messages to a teen girl, a Whatcom County judge ruled.

Jonathan Richard Brouwer, 25, met the girl in spring 2015 through the site MeetMe.com, where he used the screen name “Irish,” according to a report by the Department of Corrections.

Court records outline the charges:

On the site she listed her age as 21. In a chat she told Brouwer she was 17. They sent texts via phone. On the second day of texting he told her he loved her. At some point over the phone, Brouwer asked if she wanted to have sex. She told him she was 14, which was the truth. He continued to send sexual text messages.

The girl’s father learned of the texts and notified police. She handed over the phone to a Sumas police officer. A week later, police turned on the phone and found new messages from Brouwer. The officer responded, pretending to be the girl. Brouwer went on to talk about how he wanted to watch her take a shower, eat cake off her naked body, and other sexually charged comments.

Formal charges in the sexting case were filed in October.

In the meantime, Brouwer was charged in another case for failing to register as a sex offender. He had been convicted of child rape in the third degree for sexually touching a girl in August 2013, when she was younger than 16. They’d met through Facebook.

In that case, Superior Court Judge Deborra Garrett sentenced him to 25 months. Upon his release, he registered as a sex offender and gave an address on Lawrence Road. But he moved out of the house without telling his probation officer. When police later caught up to him he was homeless, living under bridges.

Brouwer was still on probation in the rape case when he started messaging the girl in 2015. According to a Department of Corrections report, a search of Brouwer’s phone revealed he’d been having romantic conversations over text message with other girls. He did it because he felt like “no one understood him, so he was trying to find (the right) person,” according to a report by his probation officer.

Brouwer pleaded guilty to communicating with a minor for immoral purposes and failing to register as a sex offender. The plea bargain suggested a sentence of one year in prison, whereas the standard for someone with Brouwer’s record is about four years.

The deputy prosecutor, Shannon Connor, cited “extreme” issues with the evidence — considering the girl claimed, at various times, to be 14, 17 and 21 — as a key reason for the deal.

Superior Court Judge Charles Snyder handed down a sentence of two years, still below the range suggested by state sentencing guidelines but more than the plea agreement called for. Once he’s released, Brouwer will be restricted from using alcohol, marijuana and the internet for three years while he’s on probation, according to the DOC.

Over the past decade Brouwer has been convicted of first-degree theft, tampering with a witness, identity theft and four instances of violating no-contact orders.

Caleb Hutton: 360-715-2276, @bhamcaleb

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