Ash Fork man lands 30-year prison sentence

Jail term stems from child sexual exploitation charges

<b>Donald Leacock</b>

<b>Donald Leacock</b>

A Coconino County Superior Court judge handed down a 30-year prison sentence to 52-year-old Donald Leacock of Ash Fork Sept. 5.

In July, Leacock pleaded guilty to sexual exploitation of a minor, attempted sexual exploitation of a minor, child abuse and vulnerable adult abuse in connection with the case. Leacock had originally been indicted of 41 counts that included sexual exploitation of a minor, child abuse and sexual conduct with a minor.

A Coconino County Grand Jury convicted Leacock on 24 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor March 13. The trial had been set for mid-August. Leacock, currently in the Coconino County Jail, was taken into custody March 1. A second Ash Fork resident, Howard Leventhal, was also arrested in connection with the case. A third suspect, Richard Rush, was arrested May 9 in Alaska. Their cases are still pending.

The arrests came after deputies responded to a civil standby request from a 14-year-old female who lived in Leacock's Kaibab Estates West residence near Ash Fork. The female reported the sex crimes to officers. According to authorities, Leacock lived in the home with his 16-year-old wife and would invite other men to have intercourse with her and take photographs and film the acts, often posting the photographs on the Internet to help arrange meetings between his wife and other people.

Child Protective Services, the Safe Child Center of Northern Arizona and the Coconino County Sheriff's Department all participated in the subsequent investigation. A number of photos and movies were recovered from locations in both Ash Fork and Phoenix, where Leacock lived prior to his move to the Ash Fork area, in connection to the investigation. Leacock originally moved to Arizona from St. Louis, Mo., where he lived with his teen wife after consent was given by her mother to marry Leacock. Authorities in Coconino County reported that the minors involved in the investigation had been moved to safe locations.


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