The Bellefontaine Police Department issued an alert to parents that there has been an increase in cases where a sexual deviant is attempting to lure children through social media to take inappropriate photos of themselves and send them to the online predator.
On its Facebook page, the department issued this Parental Alert……..
“Parents, we have seen an increase in the amount of instances where a sexual deviant is attempting to lure your child through social media to take inappropriate photos of themselves and send them back to the online predator. In some instances in neighboring counties, we have learned that they will then attempt to trap your son/daughter into paying them for not sharing the photos after they have received them.
The way the scam works is that they will use tactics to prey upon your son/daughter. After they begin an online conversation with them, they will convince them through creative talk to send them sexually explicit photos of themselves. After the predator receives the photos of your son/daughter, they will then exploit these photos if your son/daughter does not comply with sending them money. They will threaten your son/daughter that if they don’t send them money by a set timeline, they will spread the photos online. In some instances in other areas, this has happened. Once the pics are online, it’s very hard to track where the photos end up.
Please educate yourself and your children on online predators that will exploit your children! Let’s protect our community and join together to take a stance on online predators and online scams. Please take action steps now to prevent this in your own home. Encourage your son or daughter to notify you immediately if they ever are asked to do such things. Then, please notify the police department so that we can investigate. Remind your son or daughter that they are not alone and that they should not be embarrassed to share this information with you. Lastly, please ask your son/daughter today if they have ever been asked to do this. You may find that they have and were too scared or embarrassed to speak up. Please be patient and understanding with them, and report this to your local law enforcement agency immediately if you find evidence this happened.”