The 19-year-old foster son of Pierce County Sheriff's spokesman Detective Ed Troyer was charged Wednesday with third-degree rape of a child and third-degree child molestation for alleged sexual conduct with a 14-year-old girl.
The 19-year-old foster son of Pierce County sheriff’s spokesman Detective Ed Troyer has been charged with third-degree rape of a child and third-degree child molestation for alleged sexual conduct with a 14-year-old Tacoma girl, according to the state Attorney General’s Office, which is handling the case.
On March 22, the girl’s mother woke up around 4:45 a.m., saw a strange man in her house, woke her husband and called 911, according to charging documents. Her husband tackled the man, later identified as Zach Troyer, and held him until Tacoma police arrived, according to charging documents.
Both Zach Troyer and the girl initially denied having a sexual relationship, but the girl later told police she had invited Troyer to her house on multiple occasions after her parents went to bed, charging papers say.
The Attorney General’s Office assumes responsibility for criminal cases “that present a potential conflict for the local prosecutor,” Dan Sytman, a spokesman for Attorney General Rob McKenna, said in an email. “We were asked to take this case because the defendant is related to a longtime employee of the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office.”
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Under state law, it is illegal for an adult to have sex with someone who is at least 14 but younger than 16 if the alleged perpetrator is at least 4 years older than the alleged victim. Both third-degree child rape and third-degree child molestation are class C felonies.
Troyer issued a statement via email Thursday:
“As foster parents we have raised seven kids through foster care, including Zach, who we got when he was 5 years old,” Troyer’s statement said. “All were taken out of abusive situations.
“Zach currently lives on his own. I would expect him to be treated the same as other 19-year-olds facing similar allegations of consensual sexual activity, and I’m confident the truth will come out.”