A Vassar Township woman and a Mount Morris man discussed sedating the woman’s 10-year-old and 15-year-old daughters, and the man’s 2-year-old daughter, so they could use the girls for sexual purposes, according to court documents.
A hearing on the evidence began Monday in Genesee County District Court for Jennifer L. Beckman, 37, and Michael J. Foster Jr., 33, who are among more than 20 suspects charged with crimes after an investigation by the Genesee Human Oppression Strike Team, or G.H.O.S.T.
The sex-sting operation gained state and national media coverage, and those accused include a senior bank executive, a candidate for U.S. Senate and a financial adviser.
Beckman’s lawyer, Flint attorney Jodi L. Hemingway, said Beckman worked at the Vassar McDonald’s restaurant at the time of her arrest. Beckman, who now lists herself as “homeless” in Genesee County court documents, is charged with human trafficking by recruiting her two minor daughters for child sexually abusive activity.
She also is charged with conspiring with Foster to commit first-degree criminal sexual conduct, and with child sexually abusive activity. Investigators allege Foster was having sex with his 2-year-old daughter.
Monday’s preliminary exam was suspended until Sept. 6 after testimony from witness Victoria Dallas of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office.
Dallas, according to records in Tuscola County Circuit Court – where authorities are trying to terminate Beckman’s parental rights to her two daughters – claims she viewed online comments between Beckman and Foster on a “Kik” app.
Dallas alleges Beckman and Foster discussed sexual activity involving Beckman’s daughters, now 10 and 15, and Foster’s daughter, 2.
Lt. Kariann Nelson of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, who interviewed Beckman on April 19, claims in court documents that Beckman had been sending online messages to Foster for about three years, and the messages were mostly sexual in nature.
Beckman said Foster messaged her about wanting to have sex with Beckman’s daughters, and about touching and having sex with his own daughter, according to police. Beckman, police claim, admits replying to Foster in the same manner, stating she wanted to perform a sex act on Foster’s 2-year-old daughter.
Police allege Beckman also admitted letting Foster visit her house in 2016 when she lived in Mount Morris in Genesee County, and allowed Foster to sexually molest her then 7-year-old daughter before Beckman performed oral sex on Foster.
Nelson states Beckman said she uses online messaging apps such as “MeetMe” and “Kik” to message other people, mostly males. Police allege Beckman said she took photos of her youngest daughter in her underwear and sent them to a computer user she believes was a male.
Police allege that in one photo, the girl’s legs are spread apart and her underwear is “barely covering her genitals.” Beckman, police claim, stated she sent such photos “because she knew it aroused the men she was talking to.”
Hemingway isn’t acknowledging that Beckman made such statements to Lt. Nelson.
“The allegations are disturbing, there’s no doubt about that,” Hemingway said. “I’m not at liberty to talk about her statement to the police. I’m anticipating that there will be testimony about that at the (Sept. 6) hearing.”
Foster faces six charges in Genesee County in two criminal cases: first-degree criminal sexual conduct, human trafficking, accosting children for immoral purposes, communicating with another by computer to commit a crime, and two counts of child sexually abusive activity.
Foster’s lawyer, Flint attorney Michael Ewing, said he doesn’t believe there’s evidence showing Foster molested Foster’s 2-year-old daughter.
“Obviously, it’s very stressful for him, especially when you look at what you’re charged with, and you say to yourself ‘I wasn’t doing these things. This is not what I was engaged in,’” Ewing said. “When you’re being accused of things that you didn’t do, it’s really frightening, and I know he’s very scared.”
Tuscola County court documents state a 2011 complaint received by the state involving Beckman “was substantiated” for failure to protect her daughters by continuing to allow a man to discipline her two children even after he left evidence of injuries on them while physically disciplining the girls.
Court documents report a 2014 complaint to state officials alleged “sexual abuse and sexual contact” of Beckman’s youngest daughter by Beckman’s then-boyfriend.
A 2016 complaint to the state alleged Beckman had resumed dating a man accused of molesting Beckman’s oldest daughter in about 2009. Authorities reported informing Beckman she has a duty to protect her daughters from abuse or neglect by anyone in her children’s presence.
Beckman’s oldest daughter now lives with her father, while her youngest daughter lives with grandparents, according to court records.
Tom Gilchrist is a staff writer for The Advertiser. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.