Michigan teens plead to sex assault, child porn charges

CHARLOTTE, MICH. - Two teens facing felony charges after one recorded the other's sexual assault of a 12-year-old girl have pleaded guilty to sex and child pornography crimes.

Hunter Chance, 15, of Ludington, pleaded guilty to one count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct involving force or coercion and one count related to child pornography.

Brodrick McPhail, 14 at the time of his arrest, pleaded to the same two charges and an additional count related to distributing child pornography. He lives in Grand Ledge.

In exchange for their pleas, prosecutors dropped one count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct for each defendant.

Grand Ledge police last year obtained a video of the "sexual encounter" from McPhail's cell phone through a search warrant, according to court records.

The video shows Chance having sex with the girl in the basement of a Grand Ledge home. Records indicate that the video was then distributed to other minors, although the records don't state how widely it was distributed.

Judge Janice Cunningham must decide whether to sentence the teens as children or adults. If sentenced as adults, they both face up to 20 years in prison.

Alex Rusek, who represents Chance, said he intends to call multiple witnesses at the May 10 hearing to "show that Mr. Chance should be sentenced as a juvenile."

McPhail's attorney will have a similar opportunity.

Jackson County Prosecutor Jerard Jarzynka, who is serving as prosecutor in the case, did not respond to a request for comment. He previously told the State Journal he was appointed to the case to avoid any conflict of interest on the part of Eaton County Prosecutor Doug Lloyd's office.

Brodrick McPhail is the son of former Eaton County Undersheriff Fred McPhail, who unsuccessfully ran against Sheriff Tom Reich in November's election.

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© 2017 Lansing State Journal


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