Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. FILE PHOTO

Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. FILE PHOTO

Maple Valley day care employee charged with sex offenses

Federal Way man was employed at Discovery Playtown

Prosecutors have charged a Federal Way man, a former day care employee in Maple Valley, with child sex offenses.

Prosecutors filed charges on June 4 against 25-year-old Joseph Hefner of Federal Way, including rape of a child in the first degree, child molestation in the first degree, and communication with a minor for immoral purposes.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, Hefner served as an employee at Discovery Playtown in Maple Valley, 26545 Maple Valley Black Diamond Road SE, and met the family of the two victims in the case working at the day care.

Additionally, Hefner held a previous juvenile conviction for child molestation in the first degree, having been arrested in 2012 and serving as a registered sex offender until 2021, according to court documents.

According to documents, Hefner maintained a friendship with the children’s family for years.

Prosecutors have charged Hefner with having sexual intercourse and sexual contact and communicating in a sexual nature with two minors in incidents within a range of Jan. 1, 2022 to May 2, 2024.

According to the affidavit, the King County Sheriff’s Office received a report against Hefner regarding a child sex offense on May 2, 2024. Law enforcement arrested Hefner on May 31 following an investigation.

In a police interview with Hefner, Hefner admitted to a sexual incident between him and one of the children, having sexual contact multiple times, both at the family’s home and his residence with one of the children, and to communicating with one of the children via Discord, an online social media platform, regarding sexual content and sending sexually explicit videos, according to the affidavit.

According to Casey McNerthney, director of communications for the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, Hefner remains in custody on $500,000 bail, set at his first appearance hearing in the King County Superior Court. According to McNerthney, the court scheduled Hefner’s arraignment for June 13 at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent.




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