St. Helens, Ore. — A man from St. Helens has pleaded guilty to multiple sexual charges against a minor in a Columbia County courtroom. Kurtis Austin, 32, was arrested on February 6, 2023, after a five-month investigation by St. Helens police detectives. The investigation began after receiving information that Austin had reportedly engaged in sexual contact with a 17-year-old minor in the St. Helens area.

After his arrest, detectives executed search warrants and found multiple child pornography images of the victim in Austin’s possession. The Columbia County District Attorney’s Office presented the case to a grand jury, resulting in Austin being indicted on multiple charges.

On May 3, Austin pled guilty to Attempted Using a Child in Display of Sexually Explicit Conduct, Encouraging Child Sexual Abuse 2, two counts of Sexual Abuse 3, Unlawful Delivery of Marijuana, and Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor. He was sentenced to 190 days in jail and 36 months of probation. The conditions of his probation include registering as a sex offender, having no contact with minors or being where minors congregate, and undergoing sex offender treatment. If he fails to comply with the terms of his probation, the court has the option to send Austin to prison for up to three years.

The St. Helens detectives received assistance from the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office and the Columbia County District Attorney’s Office during their investigation. Anyone with additional information related to Austin’s contact with minors is encouraged to contact Detective Gaston or Detective Smith at 503-397-3333.

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