Robert Gonzales allegedly pimped foster child for cash and meth

UPDATE: A court has sentenced Robert Gonzales to 112 years to life in prison. The sentence is more than twice that handed down to Thomas White, who was convicted of a similar crime in early January 2015.

The First Judicial District DA's office has filed fifteen charges against 39-year-old Robert Gonzales in response to what prosecutors portray as an exploitative horror show of activities involving the most vulnerable of victims: a runaway turned foster child who's said to have been pimped for cash and meth over a period of years beginning when she was just fourteen.

Look below for photos, video and details about these startling allegations.

The teen first encountered Gonzales in 2011, according to an affidavit obtained by 7News. Her grandmother told the station the introduction took place through a foster family that had been sheltering her. By year's end, their relationship had become sexual, reportedly fueled by alcohol and drugs, and the teen, previously a frequent runaway, had apparently convinced herself she was in love with him.

As time went on, however, their pairing is said to have become nonexclusive in a particularly repulsive way. The teen told investigators that Gonzales began advertising on Craigslist, posting nude photos of her as enticement for online pervs to have sex with her at area motels like this Arvada Motel 6:

The forms of compensation included money as well as meth, which Gonzales had started to use. According to the teen, the latter was often supplied by dealers who accepted her sexual favors in lieu of cash.

Her estimate of the number of times something like this happened? Thirty.

In July 2012, the authorities briefly got involved; when checking on the teen's whereabouts, they found her cowering in a basement crawl space at Gonzales's place. Somehow, though, she wasn't taken into protective custody and was allowed to stay with Gonzales, who denied that she was being mistreated.

As the years wore on, the teen became more desperate to escape her awful situation. She said she even threw herself from Gonzales's moving vehicle this past July.

Now, at last, the teen is in another foster care setting and Gonzales, who was arrested on Halloween, has been hit with the following charges:

• Trafficking in Children (F2)

• Pandering of a Child (F2)

• 2 counts Sexual Assault of a Child/Pattern/Position of Trust (F3)

• Soliciting for Child Prostitution (F3)

• Procurement of a Child (F3)

• Keeping a Place of Child Prostitution (F3)

• Pimping of a Child (F3)

• Inducement of Child Prostitution (F3)

• Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor (F4)

• Harboring a Minor (M2)

• 4 Violent Crime Counts

At this writing, Gonzales remains in a Jefferson County jail on a $500,000 bond. He's due in court for a preliminary hearing on December 5.

Look below to take a larger look at Gonzales's mug shot and see the 7News report.

Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.

More from our Colorado Crimes archive circa July: "Underage prostitution: Nine Denver juveniles recovered, six pimps busted in FBI operation."

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts

Latest Stories