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Pleasant Grove man charged with rape of teen who thought he was retired, armed CIA agent, documents say

By Liesl Nielsen, | Posted - Dec. 18, 2018 at 3:30 p.m.

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PLEASANT GROVE — A Pleasant Grove man has been charged with the rape of a 14-year-old girl who believed he was an armed, retired CIA agent, according to jail and court documents.

David Pemberton, 52, was booked into the Utah County Jail on Dec. 6, according to jail records. He was charged with rape, obstructing justice and contributing to the delinquency of a minor about a week later, court records state.

Pemberton, who was considered a friend of the victim’s family, was in his home with his 15-year-old stepdaughter and the 14-year-old victim on Nov. 11 when he asked the victim to come into his bedroom to talk about another one of her friends, who also lived in the home, according to jail records.

After a short conversation about the victim’s friend, Pemberton gave her a “vaping e-cigarette,” and she asked if she could pay him cash for the device. He said, “no” but asked if he could touch her, court records state.

Pemberton then began rubbing her genitals and back and asked her to pull down her pants and underwear, according to court documents. When she did so, he had sexual intercourse with her, court documents state. The victim stated that she complied with his orders throughout the encounter because she believed he was a retired CIA agent who "held authority" and was known to carry a concealed firearm, jail records state.

As she was leaving his room, Pemberton told her to clean up and "not to worry about pregnancy because he had had a vasectomy," according to court documents.

The victim told police she kept the encounter a secret for several days but finally told a close friend about it, as she began to experience depression and suicidal ideation, court records state.

Pemberton found himself alone with the victim outside her house a few weeks later and told her she should tell her friend that she fabricated the story about them having sex because, “You never know who you can trust these days,” jail records state. However, the victim told police that she didn't recant her story.

Soon after, the victim’s mother became worried about her daughter's symptoms of depression and went through her cellphone, where she found messages to friends detailing the sexual encounter with Pemberton, according to court records.

The incident was reported to police and the victim received treatment.

Police later asked the 14-year-old to call Pemberton while they listened in. The victim told Pemberton about her depression and suicidal ideation, ascribing it to their sexual encounter and asked him to admit what happened. Pemberton took a long pause and then denied the encounter, court documents stated.

Police said the victim’s story remained the same when describing the incident to police, a Department of Child and Family Services caseworker and Pemberton, adding "great credibility" to her account, jail records stated.

When police contacted Pemberton later that day, he told them he had talked to the victim on the phone about her experiences with depression and suicidal ideation brought on by “personal issues,” according to court records. When police pressed him on what “personal issues” she had disclosed, he said she had accused him of having sex with her.

Pemberton told police, however, that when the victim began to describe the sexual encounter to him, he cut her off, court records state.

“The police, having listened to and recorded the same phone conversation, knew this was not true,” court records say. “While they report that Mr. Pemberton did not admit having sex with (the victim), they describe his denials as weak and hesitant and inconsistent.”

Pemberton later confessed to his wife during a phone call at the jail that he had had sex with the victim, court records stated. His wife encouraged him to confess to police, and he told her he would.

Pemberton does have a previous history of serious criminal activity in Utah.


Liesl Nielsen

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