A 28-year-old West Virginia woman has pleaded guilty to child sex-trafficking conspiracy charges after admitting that she provided an underage relative to a former police chief in exchange for $100.
Kristen Naylor-Legg offered up the 17-year-old girl twice in 2020 to then-Gauley Bridge Police Chief Larry Allen Clay Jr., who also had been working with the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department, according to acting US Attorney Lisa Johnston.
She said Clay paid her $100 on the first occasion and promised to pay her $50 on the second but never did.
Naylor-Legg and Clay were initially charged in March and indicted the next month.
The former chief, who has pleaded not guilty, faces trial Nov. 9 on sex- trafficking charges.
The girl also has sued him and the city of Gauley Bridge in federal court. She claimed she was 17 when she was repeatedly sexually assaulted in June 2020.
“Chief Clay’s heinous conduct in this case is one of the worst examples of police misconduct and abuse of power imaginable,” her attorney Russell A. Williams told The West Virginia Record.
“We look forward to holding him accountable for his unconscionable violation of our client’s rights and breaching our collective public trust in law enforcement,” he added.
The teen was living with and in the custody of Charles Legg, her ex-stepfather, and his wife, Naylor-Legg.
“Chief Clay expressed to Mrs. Naylor-Legg that he was sexually interested in plaintiff, even though he knew plaintiff was a minor,” the complaint states, according to the Record.
“Chief Clay expressed to Mrs. Naylor-Legg that he would pay plaintiff to touch herself in a sexual way while he and Mrs. Naylor-Legg had sexual intercourse,” it added.
The girl claimed that in June 2020, Naylor-Legg began taking cell phone photos of her naked breasts and buttocks to send to Clay and others in exchange for money.
At a high school graduation party, Clay allegedly began following her around “continually trying to get physically close to her,” the complaint states.
After the party, Naylor-Legg told her that Clay was sexually interested in her.
“Naylor-Legg expressed to plaintiff that if she did not begin showing more interest in Chief Clay, she would throw plaintiff out of the house, leaving her to live on the street,” the complaint says.
“Naylor-Legg told plaintiff that she needed to have sexual intercourse with Chief Clay in exchange for money because the family needed the funds to keep the utilities on in their home,” it states.
The on-duty chief drove his police cruiser to a location outside Gauley Bridge to meet the girl, who had been driven there by Naylor-Legg, the news outlet reported.
Clay allegedly unzipped his pants and ordered the girl to perform oral sex on him before bending her over the side of the car to have sexual intercourse, the paper said.
He then allegedly paid Naylor-Legg and told the girl to “keep her mouth shut.”
The second incident took place at the former Gauley Bridge High School, which now houses City Hall and the police department.
“After Chief Clay finished, Mrs. Naylor-Legg gave plaintiff some paper towels to clean herself with. After cleaning herself, plaintiff threw the paper towels in the corner of the room,” according to the complaint.
“The grotesque actions of Chief Clay … were objectively unreasonable and were in violation of clearly established law … violated plaintiff’s right to liberty, bodily integrity, privacy and personal autonomy … deliberately injured plaintiff in a way unjustified by any government interest … shock the conscious … (and) were unlawful,” it said.
The girl is seeking damages for severe and permanent physical and emotional injuries.