A Las Vegas man convicted of subjecting a 16-year-old girl to drugs and sex as they traveled through five Western states has been sentenced to 17.5 years in federal prison.
Donald J. Peel, 64, was sentenced in Sacramento on Friday by U.S. District Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr. Peel was convicted of transporting the girl for the purpose of engaging her in illegal sexual activity, according to a u.s. attorney’s office news release.
According to court documents and evidence presented during the trial, Peel and the girl traveled through Nevada, California, Arizona, Oregon and Washington before he was arrested March 19, 2014, in Weed, where law enforcement officers found him with the teenager.
During the trip, Peel purchased and gave the girl illicit drugs, administered methamphetamine to her intravenously and then had sex with her, sometimes multiple times a day, authorities said. Needles used to inject the methamphetamine were found in his vehicle and introduced as evidence during the trial.
Evidence presented at trial showed that Peel took extensive measures to isolate his victim during the trip, to make her feel entirely dependent upon him, to conceal her age and to conceal their identities as they traveled in a vehicle in which her door would not open. When the girl was found, authorities said, she was famished and dirty.
Peel’s Las Vegas girlfriend testified during the trial that Peel wanted to “clean up” the victim so that he could prostitute her, authorities said. The girlfriend also testified that Peel had attempted to marry her so that she would not be able to testify against him.
The case resulted from an investigation by the FBI , the California Highway Patrol, the Weed Police Department, Siskiyou Juvenile Probation Department and the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office in Washington state.