Washougal man charged with rape, exploitation of young children

Stephen Rian Price was arrested Wednesday night in Washougal

VANCOUVER — A 26-year-old from Washougal is facing disturbing charges, thanks to cybertip received on Wednesday by the Vancouver Police Department’s Digital Evidence Cybercrime Unit (DECU), which includes VPD officers, as well as a special agent with Homeland Security Investigations. 

Stephen Rian Price, 26, is accused of sexually abusing two young children and distributing videos of the abuse online. Photo courtesy Vancouver Police Department
Stephen Rian Price, 26, is accused of sexually abusing two young children and distributing videos of the abuse online. Photo courtesy Vancouver Police Department

Vancouver Police indicated the tip was labeled a Priority-1, which is rare and most often indicates an immediate danger to the child. The tip was generated by the app Discord, which is used as an online chat and media distribution service, primarily for online gamers. 

“Discord had found communications and video being shared on one of their channels that detailed the sexual assault of an infant by an adult male,” Vancouver Police said in a press release. “These graphic child sexual abuse videos had never before been seen by National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), which is a strong indicator that the abuse was recent and likely being conducted by the person uploading the content.”

The Internet Protocol (IP) address reported by Discord returned to a location in Washougal. DECU investigators utilized exigent information requests, due to the grave concern for the safety of the infant seen in the video, to obtain information from various internet service providers, along with Discord, to assist detectives in identifying Stephen Rian Price as the suspect. 

DECU Detectives served a search warrant at Pierce’s address at 9:00 p.m. on Wednesday. The infant was taken to an area hospital for immediate medical attention and taken into protective custody. 

Price is in the Clark County Jail on the following charges:

  • Rape of a Child, RCW 9A.44.073 (x 5)
  • Child Molestation 1st Degree, (RCW 9A.44.083) (x1)
  • Sexual Exploitation of a Minor, RCW 9.68A.040 (x3)
  • Possession of Child Pornography First Degree, RCW 9.68A.070 (x4)
  • Distribution of Child Pornography First Degree, RCW 9.68A.050 (x3)

The investigation revealed that in addition to the sexual abuse and production of child pornography of an infant child, evidence was obtained of the rape and production of child pornography involving a second infant. 

DECU detectives will continue to investigate this case to locate other potential victims and identify other persons involved in the sharing of child sexual abuse content in the Discord chat room.

Due to circumstances involving the suspect abusing and creating child pornography with local victims, detectives believe there are likely additional victims who have yet to be identified or located. Anyone with information related to this case, or of the existence of other potential victims is asked to contact the Vancouver Police Department Tip Line at (360) 487-7399.

The arrest of this suspect and the rescue of this infant would not have been possible without the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the cooperation of Discord. Also, thanks to the Washougal Police Department and the Department of Homeland Security for their assistance.

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