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National

FL: Officers accused of bending rules on sex sting arrests

BARTOW, Fla. — In the decade since Dateline NBC’s To Catch a Predator segments popularized Internet sex stings, more than 1,200 men in Florida have been arrested, accused of preying on underage teens and children for sex.

But as the stings put more and more men behind bars, detectives are working harder and harder to keep up their arrest numbers. And the tactics they’re using to put alleged sexual offenders in jail are sweeping up large numbers of law-abiding men, too. Full Article

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  1. USA

    I wont go into details, but I’ve personally posted a few personal ads and I’ve had responses, is it okay that I’m 16? Uhhhhh. This is more or less entrapment.

  2. What can I do?

    Certainly the fact that an elected official is out grandstanding is disappointing. However, grandstanding about sex offenders is not uncommon for an elected official, and the sheriff is entitled to his/her misguided views. This is precisely why educating our elected officials is so crucial. A sheriff of all people should already know that there are many people listed on registries that have never touched a child inappropriately or committed a predatory act.

  3. Eric Knight

    As a result of this news article, the chair of the local ACLU in Florida, Retired Army Colonel Mike Pheneger, is calling for a review of its practice. Usually, this is a first step toward accessing a possible lawsuit.

    http://www.wtsp.com/story/news/investigations/2014/08/12/aclu-leader-wants-federal-review-of-judd-sex-stings/13914073/

  4. cool RSL

    This pretty much show that the TIDE is Turning. Thanks Janice !!

  5. ab

    The question on my mind is how many actual cases were there before, during, and after to catch a predator aired? I really want to know how many underage persons were saved. Given the opportunity research has shown many people will do or say something they normally would not. Using the to catch a predator sting model proves nothing and in fact it distorts reality. Below are some ways these operations did more harm than good.

    1. The agents and police pretended to be underage and asking for sex. If someone could find a real percentage of how many teens and preteens openly seek sexual activity online I bet it’s far lower than the skewed prevalence law enforcement gave.

    2. Because of 1# an image was created where teens and preteens were cast as being far more sexual than reality. Which supports the sexualization of those who need not be sexualized (prepubescent youths). In turn if the common view is that prepubescent youths are becoming involved in sexual activities (whether or not said acts are consensual) a greater level of scrutiny will be applied in classifying their acts as suggestive, sensual, erotic, sexual, or even pornographic. To a lesser extent pubescent youths are being analyzed in a similar way.

    3. Rather than focusing on the real problems and fixing them with hard work, law enforcement to the lazy approach. They said “we don’t know where to begin”. Then some genius said “let’s set up traps and see who bites”. Another replied “but how do we know everyone who bites is actually a threat?” The boss chimed in with “if they bite that shows intent.”

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