Sexual Predators on MySpace - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

02.04.07

Sexual Predators on MySpace

Sex offenders aren't afraid to get in touch with your kids on MySpace -a popular socializing website.

NewsChannel 10's Marissa Bagg went looking for the sexual predators and found convicted sex offenders asking for sex from local children online.

What NewsChannel 10 uncovered shocked Amarillo police.

And it may shock you as well.

Kathy Medrano, a 15-year-old who was targeted by a sex offender said, "He was just telling me, you're so hot I can't wait to get over there and have sex with you."

The 22-year-old sex offender was targeting Medrano on MySpace.

"He starts talking about his private parts, and sexual stuff... He masturbated to my picture and he was being very nasty, he wasn't respecting the fact that I was 15 and he was 22," Medrano said.

She says he spent months befriending her before soliciting her for sex.

This is an excerpt from one of their online conversations.

       *oh oh is this conversation just between us

       **u were sexual im juss trying to forget about that, you have made me feel uncomfortable

       *i just thought u might like that kind of thing.....and cuz i eally thought u were pretty and   

         hot....

Lieutenant Brent Womble with the Amarillo Police Department  Sex Crimes Unit said this is typical behavior.

"Sex offenders by nature are patient and willing to work at making rapport with a victim, softening them up until their inhibitions fade away," Womble said.

Mondrano's experience is not an isolated event.

NewChannel 10 found local offenders posting images we can't even show on t-v.

And these sexual predators are in touch with 15 and 16 year old girls.

One offender lies about his age, and another even says he still attends a local high school.

The more we showed police, they more they became alarmed.

"It's worrisome to see the kind of website he would have, and it would be my guess that he would be prone to repeat offenses when he's blatantly putting info out like that," Womble said.

NewsChannel 10 came across one offender on probation for two charges of aggravated sexual assault of a child.

NewsChannel 10 alerted his probation supervisor, Terry Easterling.

"These are scary and they're frightening," Easterling said.

Easterling said he forced the offender to get rid of his page.

Now, there's no trace of him.

But plenty more offenders remain on the popular website.

NewsChannel 10 went knocking on doors to confront some offenders to see if they are contacting minors.

One convicted sex offender talked to us about his page.

"It's crossed my mind, but I know in my heart and in my mind that's not what I use it for, and I even passed my last polygraph on the subject, about whether I've seen porn in general or had contact with minors," he said

Other offenders NewsChannel 10 found refused an interview.

But now that police know predators are logged onto MySpace detectives are taking action.

Lieutenant Womble said that they have to keep looking all the time and that the contact he saw is dangerous behavior.

"There's a good chance some of these guys the way they've set up these sites the likelihood of re-offending is very high," Womble said.

With more surveillance online, teens like Mondrano may feel safer on MySpace.

It does teach me I should watch who I meet and who I talk to because they could say they're 16 when they're 45," Mondrano

Since the interview, Mondrano has blocked the online sex offender from her myspace page.

From now on, her grandmother said she will track all of her conversations.

Officials say if your child has a myspace page you need to know how to get to that page.

You need to be looking at that page, knowing what they're doing, who they're talking to and what they're talking about, Womble warns.

Mondrano said from now on she will only chat with her friends and family. 

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