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"To Catch a Predator" Or Entrapment

Law Enforcement’s Use of Sexting to Entrap Innocent People into a Sex Offense

People love the show “To Catch a Predator.” It makes them feel good to think that law enforcement has the legitimate capability of catching a predatory sex offender in the act of literally pursuing his or her prey.

However, in the age of sexting and online dating, law enforcement has begun to take this concept further than that which was originally intended by the popular TV show. Police, Sheriff’s Departments, special tasks forces and the like are taking otherwise adult conversations - between, and manipulating them into situations that constitute allegations of sex offenses against people who otherwise are not predisposed to the predatory nature of certain types of sexual offenders.

These circumstances arise when law enforcement take one parties phone in a usually innocent adult sexual conversation, and then begin making advances or proposals or even going so far as to mysteriously change the age of the other person on the phone to that of a juvenile. At that point, the trap is set.

As opposed to calling the individual on the other line and having a conversation with him or her about the legal and legitimate adult exchange, the government creates an illegal situation and then lays in wait for the otherwise innocent individual to “take the bait.”

At Martin & Stone, LLC, our managing partner and lead criminal defense attorney, Adam Stone understands the nuances of an entrapment case such as is outlined above. Our litigation team – which includes an in-house investigator – prepares each case with an eye on every detail of each report and a relentless pursuit of all relevant facts, witnesses, videos, recordings, interviews and other evidence that is available. All with the goal of providing the best, most effective defense to get our clients home to their families as soon as possible.

It is imperative that those individuals who may be under investigation or under arrest for any type of sexually oriented offense immediately assert their right to remain silent and their right to an attorney. It does not matter whether he or she actually committed any crime, remaining silent until he or she has spoken with a competent criminal defense attorney is often the difference in finding the truth and/or successfully asserting a defense to such charges in either State or Federal Court.

Convictions for sexually oriented offenses can lead to prolonged incarceration in state prison and mandatory sex offender reporting, loss of employment, loss of the right to vote and loss of the right to carry a firearm – just to name a few.

Martin & Stone, LLC is conveniently located in Bucyrus, Ohio – equidistant to federal and state courts in Northcentral Ohio. Our managing partner and lead criminal defense attorney, Adam Stone, represents individuals throughout Crawford, Seneca, Wyandot County and all over Northcentral Ohio; as well as in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio and U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. In fact, he has even been accepted to practice pro hac vice in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana.

If you are under investigation for a sexually oriented offense, or if you have a loved one incarcerated for a sexually oriented offense anywhere in Ohio or across the country in federal holding, we invite you to contact us today for a confidential consultation.

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