Stetson Perry

Perry

A Rexburg man was arrested last week after a 12-year-old girl reported he raped her during an August camping trip at Palisades Reservoir.

The victim told a Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office detective during a forensic interview that she was sleeping in a camper when Stetson Tyler Perry, 24, woke up in the night, removed her clothes and raped her.

The two had gone to a reunion for Perry’s family, and were expecting the victim’s sister, who Perry was dating, to arrive the next day. The victim’s parents allowed her to go with Perry because she had friends attending and expected she would sleep with them. Instead, she slept in Perry’s trailer, where the alleged rape occurred.

The victim’s mother told a deputy she had noticed Perry becoming unusually close with her younger daughter, attending extracurricular activities, but did not want to make assumptions. She became aware of the relationship after overhearing a phone conversation in which Perry asked the victim if he had “competition.” He had also referred to her as “darling” and “Angel Eyes” in messages.

The victim told her mother and detectives about the rape and incidents in which Perry had kissed her. She said neither she nor Perry said anything before, during or after the rape in the camper. She also said she had sent an inappropriate photo of herself to Perry.

Detectives searched the victim’s phone and found Snapchat messages between Perry and the victim. They found messages where Perry talked about dressing the victim in camo and snuggling with her.

The victim’s sister confronted Perry about the messages and recorded the conversation. He denied molesting the victim and said he didn’t mean what he said in the messages. The victim’s sister also asked him about telling the victim he would date her when she was 18, and he said it was a joke.

Perry became agitated during the conversation and told the victim’s sister he would “disappear.” She called the police after he threatened self harm. He estimated he sent 10-15 messages a day to the victim. The detective later learned from Snapchat records Perry had sent as many as 100 messages to her in one day.

Perry spoke to detectives in September and denied the allegations. The police report stated Perry was calm during the interview, and that he told the detective he was “pissed off” about the accusation. He became nervous, however, when the detective asked to search his phone, but consented.

The report states Perry agreed to undergo a polygraph examination, but did not return calls from the sheriff’s office.

Perry was charged with lewd conduct with a minor child under 16, punishable with up to life in prison. His bond was set at $30,000.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Nov. 20 in Bonneville County Courthouse.

Reporter Johnathan Hogan can be reached at 208-542-6746.

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