The FBI has been working with authorities in San Luis Obispo County on an investigation of Bradford Mitchell, the 52-year-old Michigan man sentenced last week for charges relating to statutory rape of a 16-year-old girl from San Luis Obispo.
Federal charges have not yet been ruled out in the case and the investigation is ongoing, according to Laura Eimiller, a spokeswoman with the FBI.
Mitchell was sentenced to two years in state prison last week by Judge Michael Duffy after entering a plea of no contest to charges of statutory rape, oral copulation with a minor, and communicating with a person over the Internet for the purposes of committing a crime. A no-contest plea results in conviction without the admission of guilt.
Mitchell met the girl through an online game on the Web site There.com about four to five months before they met in person, prosecutors said.
He then coordinated a trip from Michigan to meet up with the girl in December. Mitchell and the girl spent two nights in different places in the county before the Pismo Beach Police Department found them in Shell Beach and arrested Mitchell.
The girl has since received some help with dealing with traumatic events in her life, including her father’s death and the situation with Mitchell, outside of San Luis Obispo, prosecutors said in court last week.
Mitchell has a minor criminal record, his lawyer, Ron Crawford, said at the sentencing. Crawford said that his client was remorseful and well aware of the effect that he has had on the young woman and her family.
The Tribune is not naming the teenager because she’s a minor and a victim of a sex crime.