Trial started Wednesday for two men who are accused in the sexual assaults and molestations of five victims in Tustin.
Dustin James Elwood, 24, is charged with 17 counts of lewd or lascivious acts with a minor, two counts of using a minor for obscene matter and a count of possession of child pornography, all felonies.
Jimmy Ernest Hutton, 27, is charged with six counts of lewd or lascivious acts with a minor, two counts of attempted lewd acts with a child younger than 14, all felonies, and a misdemeanor count of child annoyance.
The oldest of three brothers, who is now 18, testified that Elwood, who came to live with his family in Tustin when the alleged victim was in the sixth grade, said the defendant befriended him and would take him to baseball practices and games when his father was too busy with work.
Elwood, who was friends with the alleged victim’s oldest brother, first befriended the youngest sibling when he was 3 or 4, the victim testified.
“It was in junior high that he started to realize maybe this relationship was inappropriate,” Senior Deputy District Attorney Heather Brown told jurors in her opening statement today.
The allegations against Elwood and Hutton came to light when the mother of the boys found a flash drive containing child pornography images of the victims, Brown said.
One of the boys was expected to testify about a sex act involving a candy bar, Brown said.
Elwood and Hutton would “share photographs” of the boys taken during sex acts, Brown alleged.
In one instance, one of the boys engaged in a sex act with both men, Brown alleged.
Two other victims who were friends of the brothers accused the men of inappropriate behavior such as hugs and comments about how “cute” they are, Brown alleged.
The sexual assaults date back to 2008 when the boys were about 7 to 11 years old, according to prosecutors.
Both Elwood and Hutton were arrested with flash drives containing pornographic images of the victims, Brown alleged.
Huy Nguyen, Elwood’s attorney, acknowledged that the allegations relating to the oldest of the brothers were largely true, but he said he would challenge allegations related to the other two boys.
Hutton’s attorney, Sperry Tavoularis, said the brother involved in the sex act with the candy bar initially denied it happened.
“Much of the evidence undermines the case against Mr. Hutton,” Tavoularis said. “At the end of this trial I will ask you for verdicts of not guilty.”
— City News Service