An article from CNN makes a case for making your children’s bedrooms a ‘screen free zone’ meaning no tablets, cell phones or computers in a child’s bedroom. They argue that kids having these devices in bed can affect their sleep but there’s another benefit to screen free bedrooms.
If kids do not have these devices in their bedrooms then it makes it harder for predators to contact them while parents are unaware. I’ve posted way too many stories where kids have been groomed through their cell phones on mobile apps than I care to remember. Also while the kids are sleeping this gives parents a chance to see what the kids are doing on their devices by reviewing their apps and history.
Just some people who have been arrested for allegedly posting child porn to micro-blogging site Tumblr.
62-year-old Richard Comenzo, a public defender from Massachusetts using the screen name of ‘XBostonDad’ He’s also accused of soliciting children for sex. Tumblr reported him to the NCMEC.
47-year-old Billy Scott McGhee and 36-year-old Aaron N. Landers, both of Bristow, Virginia have also been arrested for allegedly posting child porn to Tumblr. Authorities were again notified by the NCMEC.
I don’t know what it is about Tumblr that attracts the pedos but this should serve as warning that they need to stop. As I’ve mentioned before Tumblr is owned by Yahoo which used to have a bad reputation when it came to dealing with predators in their chat rooms. They’re not making the same mistake with Tumblr and they will turn you in.
Recently 29-year-old death metal singer Lane Steele Kozloff was recently arrested in Torrance, California for allegedly soliciting sex from a 14-year-old girl on craigslist. Investigators say that Kozloff placed an ad looking for a “lil girl”. Ew. Kozlofff is said to have arranged a meeting with the girl at a restaurant and that the back of his SUV was all laid out with a makeshift bed. Of course the 14-year-old girl was actually a federal agent. When you have a bed in the back of your ride you can’t really argue that you were just going to ‘hang out’.
I’m not going to mention his band or anything because the rest of the band probably had nothing to do with it however it is of interest that Kozloff has worked as a substitute teacher at a music school. I guess he can kiss that gig goodbye.
Donald Gary Town
47-year-old Donald Gary Town was recently arrested in Missoula, Montana, for allegedly trying to solicit sex from a 14-year-old boy on craigslist who was actually an investigator from the Montana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. Town’s ad allegedly said that he was in to “young skinny” males. Town is said to have the investigator for explicit photos and of course was arrested at pre-determined meeting location.
Not surprisingly Town is a registered sex offender who not only did time for sexual abuse of children but also sexual intercourse without consent. He obviously didn’t do enough time. I mean who would have guessed that a sex offender would have taken to craigslist to find more victims? The answer to that question is everyone except craigslist.
Seriously, what is it with Snapchat and teachers?
Anyway, this time the suspect is 29-year-old Todd Christopher Gibson of Landsdale, Pennsylvania. He was arrested by police in Towamencin for allegedly Snapchatting pics of his junk to a then 17-year-old female student in August of last year. Police reports also say that when the student said that he would be caught Gibson supposedly said he did not care and that Gibson repeatedly asked the girl to come to his home.
Gibson has been suspended by the school but no word on if that was with or without pay.
Brandon M. Amato
Whenever I hear tech journalists and other denizens of the Silicon Valley echo chamber talk about Snapchat they always say the same thing. “Snapchat isn’t used for sexting. It’s used by kids to send goofy pictures to their friends”. That may be true but it’s not stopping predators from sending inappropriate pictures to your kids.
For those of you who may not know Snapchat is a smartphone app that allows users to send pictures to each other that supposedly disappear after 10 seconds. However that isn’t always the case.
Getting back to the predator thing today’s contestant is 24-year-old Brandon M. Amato of Madison, Wisconsin. He’s a former high school teacher who allegedly sent pictures of his junk to two underage female students of his former school through Snapchat, one that 17-years-old and another that was 16.
Amatao is not the first teacher profiled on this site that was caught using Snapchat inappropriately. By my count he’s the fourth. Not a huge number but why does Snapchat seem to be popular among teacher creepers?
Unless it’s through some school approved channels no student should ever be social network friends with a teacher. It gives a very bad image of the teacher.
UPDATE 1/21/2015: Amato was sentenced to six months in jail and two years probation.
At his sentencing the judge addressed him thusly…
“To not incarcerate you sends the wrong message to people who are in a position of trust,” Dane County Circuit Judge William Hanrahan said.
We need more judges like that.
54-year-old George Hristovski of Elverta, California, used to be an agent for the TSA. I say used to because he was recently arrested by the FBI for allegedly looking for mother-daughter sex on craigslist.
Investigators say that Hristovski placed an ad on the casual encounters section of craigslist looking to have sex with a mother and underage daughter. He received a response to his ad from a 30-year-wold woman with a 13-year-old daughter who said she was willing to entertain his sick requests. Reports say that e-mails sent from Hristovski to the mother were quite graphic and explicit. Of course the mother was actually an investigator for the Placer County Sheriff’s Department who traced his IP address to a Homeland Security owned computer. Homeland Security oversees the TSA and the TSA has terminated Hristovski’s employment. The FBI said that at the time of his arrest at his home Hristovski tried claiming that it was just a fantasy. Right, and if he showed up at a meeting point he probably would have been there to just ‘hang out’.
Just another sexual predator on craigslist who possibly could have used his government connections to do God only knows what to his victims. Yet craigslist gets yet another pass. Heaven forfend they should actually do any kind of moderation of their own site.
I can’t do every craigslist creeper story anymore because there are just too many of them. Every once in a while though, it only takes a mugshot to make me stop and post one of those stories. For example take 51-year-old Jeff Beckman of Rosholt, Wisconsin. Have you ever heard the expression ‘don’t get your nose bent out of shape’? It looks like he did.
Anyway, Beckman has recently pleaded not guilty to child solicitation and child porn charges. Police in nearby Marathon County say that Beckman allegedly responded to a craigslist ad they placed posing as someone peddling children. They say that Beckman was willing to pay $60 to have sex with three children, ages 12, 14, and 15. Police later found child porn while searching his home.
Yet as a society we’re still apathetic towards getting craigslist to monitor their own yard. I wonder if the ad the police placed was even flagged by anyone on their local craigslist. Somehow I doubt that it was.
Former Elementary School Teacher Accused of Sending Inappropriate Messages to Student:
27-year-old Robert Walrath was a teacher at a school in Bartow, Florida. He was fired from his job after allegations that he was sexually harassing a student. He has since been arrested for allegedly inappropriately touching the 5th grade girl and sending her sexually explicit messages on the smart phone messaging app Kik.
I’m not trying to blame the victim at all here but am I old-fashioned or is 5th grade too early for kids to have a smart phone? A cell phone maybe to call parents in cases of emergency but a smart phone? To me that just seems like it makes it easier for predators to contact younger and younger kids as what allegedly happened here.
This girl did the right thing by telling someone however if you want to prevent something like this from happening to your kids make sure you know what apps they have on their cell phones and if you don’t approve of them learn how to take them off and keep them off.
FBI: Man traveled to have sex with two girls:
The article I linked to is really short but how could I pass on that mugshot? Yeesh.
Anyway, 23-year-old Edward Vadney of Winter Haven, Florida, was arrested in Seminole County, Florida, after allegedly posting an ad on craigslist. The ad seemed to indicate that Vadney wanted to have sex with young children. Responding to the ad was a father of two, a 6-year-old and a 10-year-old. Vadney allegedly responded that he would only have sex with the children if it was ‘cool’ with their father.
Of course since you’re reading this here and it did take place in Florida the father turned out to be an FBI agent and Vadney was arrested.
No word on if he also planned on stealing the children’s souls.
Still, no one cares except me apparently that craigslist doesn’t monitor their own site for cretins like this even though they probably inhabit every section of the site.
UPDATE 1/6/2015: Vadney was sentenced to 17 years in federal prison. Thanks to sweetd for the update.