Author Archive: Trench Reynolds
20-year-old Stephannie Figueroa worked at a martial arts studio in Orlando. Florida. It’s there where she is said to have met an 11-year-old male student whom she is accused of soliciting sex from over the mobile messaging app Kik. Not only did Figueroa allegedly touch the boy on the thigh at the karate school but also sent naked pics of herself to the boy on Kik, fifteen in the last three months. She is also accused of inviting the boy over to her 21st birthday party so they could have sex.
This isn’t the youngest Kik victim, or Kiktim if you will, that’s been on the site, but he is the youngest that’s been solicited by a woman. Maybe I was a late bloomer, but when I was a 11 I was more concerned about Atari games than girls, and when I was old enough to date girls who were 20 most of them wanted to date guys who were over 21. What could a grown woman have possibly seen in an 11-year-old boy? Even if he was 6′ tall and 180 lbs. HE’S STILL 11-YEARS-OLD. He should be playing Minecraft and not worrying if his karate instructor is going to touch him in the no-no place. Let’s not forget that even though this kid was only 11 there’s still going to be idiots who say “I wish I had karate instructors like that when I was a kid”. If that’s you then you’re part of the problem. With that kind of attitude you’re encouraging the over-sexualization of children whether you realize it or not. Just because the alleged perpetrator in this case is female shouldn’t make any kind of difference not in the eyes of the law nor the eyes of society.
UPDATE 6/26/2016: Figueroa has pleaded not guilty and has been released on bond.
44-year-old Darryl Taylor of St. Paul, Minnesota, was recently charged with allegedly prostituting two adult women and a 17-year-old girl on Backpage. The 17-year-old was reportedly forced to have sex with 10 men a day for 3 days. Taylor is said to have kept the two adult women hooked on heroin and cocaine to keep them working for him. Like most pimps he would physically assault all of them by choking them or beating them and would keep the money they made for himself.
Speaking of making money, Taylor is said to have placed hundreds of ads of his victims on Backpage. That’s money that Backpage has made off of the violence and rape of these women while calling it their right to free speech, with the rights of these victims to live free be damned.
Backpage may still be licking their financial wounds but they’re still out there reaping the benefits of sex trafficking,
Previously, I’ve complained that Madison High shooter, James Austin Hancock, received a ridiculously light sentence for shooting three people at point-blank range in the school’s cafeteria. Hancock was charged as a juvenile since he was 14 at the time of the shooting and was sentenced to be held in juvenile detention until his 21st birthday. I was of the belief that Hancock should have been charged as an adult and for three attempted murder charges should have received a great deal of prison time. Now that the motive for the shooting has been made public I am even more steadfast in that belief.
In court documents that have recently been made public, Hancock claims the reason he shot three of his classmates was because he had it ‘rough’ at home. In case you were wondering, yes those are sarcasm quotes around the word rough. Here’s how ‘rough’ Hancock supposedly had it…
“The reason he gave for shooting was his home life. His mom doesn’t watch any of his sporting events and dad was on his case for his grades and has a lot of chores. Hancock further stated he was always grounded (at least seven months out of the year),” the investigation report says.
Please forgive my language, because I’m trying to be more professional in my writing, but are you fucking kidding me? Hancock shot three kids at point-blank range because he was grounded and didn’t want to do his fucking chores? For this degree of sociopathy he was only sentenced to less than six years. This is one of the biggest miscarriages of justice that I’ve written about on this website in the past 16 years.
Once again another school shooter who is nothing more than a selfish coward who resorts to violence instead of dealing with his own inadequacies.
For a few years now there’s been a movement among some who believe that the names of killers like Omar Mateen shouldn’t be made public. They believe that this gives them the notoriety they wanted. In the past I have posted why I disagree with this practice. Long story short, we shouldn’t forget history’s villains and if we let the media give them names, like Son of Sam or the Zodiac Killer, that gives them even more notoriety than they were looking for. Instead, what we should be doing is not over-reporting the story.
For example, it’s no secret that Mateen pledged his allegiance to ISIS right before the shooting and ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack even though it wasn’t organized or ordered by them. ISIS thrives on having their name in Western media, lone wolf attacks like Orlando should not be attributed to ISIS as it just gives them free publicity and propaganda which in turn could influence more ISIS inspired lone wolf attacks like the Pulse nightclub shooting.
The other worrisome practice I see being carried out by the press is the reporting of every ancillary detail and minutia about the attack. Do we really need to know that Mateen texted his wife during the attack and also checked Facebook to see if the attack was trending yet? No, we don’t. In my opinion those are what I like to call rubbernecking details, items the news reports on solely to get pageviews and clicks. Journalism used to operate under such tenets of whether there was a need for the public to know certain details of a story, emphasis on the word ‘need’. Now most major media outlets are more concerned with SEO keywords than information that is in the public’s best interest. In my opinion this is just another practice that gives the killers the notoriety that they were looking for since their every move during the incident is dissected like they were some Hollywood celebrity ordering lunch at a small town diner.
I’m not holding my breath on any of these changes to take effect anytime soon since news publishing is the industry that coined the callous phrase ‘if it bleeds it leads’.
26-yer-old Caylan Butcher of Springfield, Ohio, was recently indicted for allegedly raping a 19-year-old woman that he met through the dating and social site MeetMe.com. Butcher is said to have posed as someone else on the site and talked to the victim for a number of weeks before inviting her to his home. He then texted the victim saying that he wasn’t home but his ‘brother’ was, actually referring to himself. He is then accused of raping the woman.
Posing as their own brother or relative is a trick that’s mostly been used by online predators looking for underage girls. Usually, an online predator will pose as a younger child before befriending the victim and either asking them or extorting them into having sex with their ‘brother’. That makes me wonder if Butcher was looking for a younger victim.
27-year-old Christopher Dunkes is a police officer in Montgomery County, Maryland. He’s been suspended without pay because he was recently arrested in an online sting conducted by the Prince William County Police in Virginia. Officer Dunkes is accused of allegedly soliciting sex from an underage girl on craigslist who was actually Prince William investigators. Dunkes reportedly asked the 15-year-old ‘girl’ twice for a specific sex act and was arrested at a local Target.
Two things should be noted about this story. The first is that it’s hard for a community to trust police when one of them is allegedly trolling craigslist for girls. The other is that the job of craigslist’s community police is being done by the actual police instead.
You can see my first post on Veron Primus here. He’s been the main person of interest in the 2006 murder of 16-year-old Chanel Petro-Nixon. Primus had recently been arrested on murder and kidnapping charges in the island country of St. Vincent. Investigators in Brooklyn say thanks to that arrest they were able to obtain evidence that allegedly connects Primus to Chanel’s murder. Authorities in Brooklyn are not saying at this time what the evidence is but that they are looking for even more evidence.
Former kids’ camp counselor Robert Alfred Lall, 26, of St. Peters, Missouri, was arrested lat last week for allegedly soliciting sex from a 13-year-old girl from Canada on the mobile messaging app Kik. Lall reportedly sent pictures of his junk to the girl and when the girl repeatedly told Lall her age he is said to have responded with “I just like younger girls I guess Lol I can’t explain it.” Most people would explain it by calling you a pedophile, but I digress. He also allegedly sent the girl a picture of another underage girl who he claims to have had sex with and told the girl that he had sent explicit pictures to an 11-year-old boy.
As you may have surmised the Lol was on him as the 12-year-old girl was an undercover investigator with Canadian authorities who contacted Homeland Security here in the U.S.
While one more creeper has been removed from the internet that doesn’t mean that Kik is safe for underage kids by any stretch of the imagination. Not since the heyday of MySpace have I seen a social network/app that was so awash in sex offenders and pedophiles.
I normally don’t post about major headline grabbing crimes like this. I prefer to post niche stories that are under-reported, but the Pulse Orlando shooting is so significant that I can’ just ignore it. If you’d rather see how a real crime blogger posts about this please visit Bonnie’s post on the matter.
Anyway these are some random thoughts I had on the matter. Some I’ve shared to social media this weekend and others I haven’t
First I’d like to share some old blog posts I’ve written on other topics that I think may apply to this tragedy. The first is that the media is beating us over the head again with lists of the deadliest shootings in America. Again I think the more they do that the more trivialized the shootings can become. Secondly, as I’ve posted before, I don’t think it’s the access of guns that is the problem. It’s never been more difficult to purchase firearms legally yet we have greater levels of gun violence than at any point in our history. Lastly, for those of you who think that every practitioner, or even the majority of practitioners, of Islam are terrorists than you need to do more research, like I did after 9/11, rather than repeating the same old myths that keep getting propagated in the more ignorant parts of the internet.
Now for some random thoughts on the matter…
Just because some murderous assclown swears allegiance to ISIS, and ISIS claims responsibility for the attack, doesn’t necessarily mean that this was an orchestrated attack by ISIS. It could have just been a moment of opportunity for ISIS to claim responsibility. I would bet dollars to doughnuts that the cowardly scumbag was the only one involved in planning the attack.
I posted the following both on Twitter and my personal Facebook page…
This once greatest country in the world is now nothing more than a poisoned well of hate.
— Trench Reynolds (@trenchreynolds) June 12, 2016
9/11 united us as a country for a time. The Pulse shooting has immediately divided us into camps for our pet causes. We've lost our way.
— Trench Reynolds (@trenchreynolds) June 12, 2016
As a society we’ve declined so much in the past 15 years that we didn’t even wait until the bodies were cold before we were waxing politically about our pet ideologies. The usual tropes were all carted out, immigration, gun control, Muslims, etc. Instead of coming together to fight hate we just kept fanning the flames of hostility. I wouldn’t say that we’re headed for a 2nd Civil War but as a country we’ve never been more divided since then, and as we all know a house divided can’t stand.
We’ve lost the ability to be objective in this country. We’re all too worried about being left or right, conservative or liberal, religious or atheist, than being human and American.