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Man Accused of Advertising Girl for Sex

September 30, 1992|JOHN CHANDLER | TIMES STAFF WRITER

A Lancaster apartment manager charged with sexually abusing a young girl over a period of two years made an explicit videotape that a prosecutor characterized Tuesday as advertising her for sex.

Robert E. Lee Jr., 47, who was in custody in lieu of $500,000 bail, pleaded not guilty to 16 counts of criminal sexual misconduct involving a now 9-year-old girl over the past two years. He faces up to 84 years in state prison if convicted on all counts, Deputy Dist. Atty. Chesley McKay said.

Lee may also face federal charges for bringing the videotape--which court records show Lee admitted making while living with the girl in Texas between late 1990 and late 1991--into California, McKay said.

In the tape, a man that the girl has identified as Lee coaches her to undress and orally copulate him while saying she wants to be a prostitute.

McKay said he does not know what Lee intended to do with the videotape. But, McKay added, "there is no question when you see the tape that the content is purely commercial in nature. If you wanted to advertise a girl for sexual favors, this is what you'd do."

Lancaster Superior Court Judge Thomas Stoever set an Oct. 27 pretrial hearing in the case. Lee's attorney, Dell Falls, asked the judge to order a psychiatric evaluation of his client. Stoever said he would consider that request later.

Lee was arrested July 27 after deputies responded to a shooting involving Lee's 25-year-old son Robert C. Lee. The son had found the videotape and explicit pictures of the girl and confronted his father, firing several gunshots, sheriff's reports show.

The younger Lee was arrested and is awaiting prosecution for discharging a firearm.

Deputies seized the videotape when they arrested the elder Lee.

Robert E. Lee was charged in late July with repeatedly forcing the girl to orally copulate him and with orally copulating her between October, 1991, and July, 1992, while living in Lancaster, Canyon Country and Llano. Authorities here believe he previously abused her in Texas and Utah, but they do not have jurisdiction there.

For the Los Angeles County incidents, Lee faces eight felony counts of oral copulation with a person under age 14, three felony counts of committing a lewd act upon a child, one felony count of continuous sexual abuse, and four other counts stemming from the videotape.

Those include felony counts of exhibiting a minor in pornography, using a minor for commercial sex acts and using a minor for sex acts, as well as a misdemeanor count of possessing obscene matter.

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