Hyrum man pleads guilty to downloading child porn and sexting teen girl

Booking photo for Zachary Taylor Oakden (Courtesy: Cache County Jail)

LOGAN — A 26-year-old Hyrum man has confessed to possessing child pornography, filming a 16-year-old girl bathing, and then sexting with the victim when released from jail previously. Zachary T. Oakden accepted a plea deal and will now await sentencing.

Oakden participated in a virtual hearing in 1st District Court Wednesday morning, appearing by web conference from jail. He pleaded guilty to sexual exploitation of a minor, a second-degree felony; enticing a minor by internet or text, a third-degree felony; and voyeurism, a class A misdemeanor.

As part of the plea agreement, prosecutors dropped five remaining charges.

In December, Cache County sheriff’s deputies uncovered a video showing Oakden hiding a camera inside a bathroom. He filmed the 16-year-old girl disrobing and taking a shower.

Deputies contacted Oakden at his home in Hyrum. They obtained a warrant to search his phone, and found nude images of at least 10 minors.

In February, deputies were contacted again by the mother of the teenage girl. She reported how Oakden, who had been released on bail, was texting her daughter. The messages were sexual in nature.

Oakden was placed in jail again on a no bail status, while the cases against him proceeded through the court system.

During Wednesday’s hearing, public defender Ryan Holdaway explained, prosecutors dropped the five remaining charges after it was determined some of the images on Oakden’s phone were of women 18-years-old and older.

Judge Cannell ordered Oakden to remain in custody and complete a presentence report about his criminal history. He also scheduled sentencing for June 16.

Oakden spoke only briefly, telling the court he understood that he was giving up his rights to a fair trial by pleading guilty. He could face up to 15 years in prison.


will@cvradio.com

Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.