Nye County man found guilty in child's death

Faces life in prison with no chance for parole

Mitch Kelly
November 19, 2020 - 8:03 am
Photo of a Nye County police cruiser

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Pahrump, NV - After an eight-day trial, a Pahrump jury has found Cole Engelson guilty of first-degree murder for the slaying of three year-old Yessenia Camp on July 15, 2017. The then-350 pound Engelson stood accused of beating his girlfriend’s 37-pound daughter to death. The victim’s injuries included a skull fracture, hemorrhages in both eyes, lung damage, and dozens of bruises and other injuries all over her body.

“This case is devastating to people who never even met little Yessenia, so it’s impossible to imagine how devastating this has been for her mother, sister, and brother,” Nye County District Attorney Chris Arabia said. “We just hope that her family can find some closure and that Yessenia somehow knows that she wasn’t forgotten.”

During his closing argument, Arabia reminded the jury about Yessenia’s joy at squirting water out of her rubber ducky at her brother during bath time the night before she died. “At that moment, her life expectancy was about 80 years,” Arabia told the jury. “It turned out that it was only about 18 hours.”

The jury got the case on Monday afternoon, the eighth day of the trial, and arrived at its verdict in just over 2 hours. “The jurors deserve a lot of credit. They had to look at and listen to some horrible things, but they stepped up and served this community,” Arabia said.

Engelson could receive a sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. Sentencing will take place on February 1, 2021 at 9:00 in Department 2 of the Pahrump District Court.