Bikini barista stand owner convicted of sexually exploiting minor

EVERETT, Wash. (AP) - The owner of two bikini barista stands in Everett has been convicted of sexually exploiting a minor.

The Daily Herald reports that it took less than an hour for jurors to return their verdict against Grab N Go espresso owner Bill Wheeler Jr. following a 10-day trial. Prosecutors said he encouraged a 16-year-old employee to expose herself to customers to get bigger tips.

Prosecutors had to prove that Wheeler knew that the girl's behavior would be part of a live show or would be photographed.

The baristas told police they weren't paid wages. Instead they kept any tips they made so long as there was $300 in the register at the end of each weekday or $150 on the weekends.

Wheeler's attorney, John Henry Browne, said his client knew the girl's age but there was no evidence he knew the teenager was giving sexually explicit shows.