RENO – A Berkeley, Calif., resident was sentenced yesterday by Chief United States District Judge Miranda M. Du to 10 years in prison to be followed by lifetime supervised release for attempting to coerce a child to engage in prostitution.
Dustin Michael Joseph (41) pleaded guilty in August 2023 to one-count of attempted coercion and enticement. In addition to imprisonment, under the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, Joseph must register as a sex offender and keep the registration current.
According to court documents and admissions made in court, Joseph used social media to message who he believed to be a teenage girl. He asked if she would be interested in filming content for a paid subscription service where a lot of content involves sexually related activities. Between March 14, 2021 through June 24, 2021, Joseph told the girl that he would pay her a couple of hundred of dollars per video; and he was going to train her to be a working girl so that she could work the various Reno events and make money, which she would have to split with him. On June 24, 2021, Joseph traveled from Berkeley to Reno and paid for a hotel room in Carson City, so he and the girl could film a pornographic video and have sex.
United States Attorney Jason M. Frierson for the District of Nevada and Special Agent in Charge Spencer L. Evans for the FBI made the announcement.
The case was investigated by the FBI and the Regional Human Trafficking and Exploitation Unit which is comprised of members from the Reno Police Department, Sparks Police Department, and Washoe County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Megan Rachow prosecuted the case.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood and for information about internet safety education, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.
Anyone with information on suspected child sexual exploitation can contact the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678) or https://report.cybertip.org.