Davis County Sheriff’s latest online child sex predator busts prompt warnings | #childpredator | #kidsaftey | #childsaftey

Davis County Sheriff’s Office. File photo:

DAVIS COUNTY, Utah, Dec. 30, 2023 (Gephardt Daily) — The latest arrests of online predators attempting to entice minors into sex has provoked the Davis County Sheriff‘s Office to reach out to parents.

“This year, detectives with the Davis County Sheriff’s Office have arrested 12 people who came to Davis County with the specific intent to commit unlawful sexual assaults against minors,” the office said in a Friday press release.

“In the past 24 hours, our investigators have arrested two individuals from out of state who traveled here to sexually assault children they met online.”

All of the cases originated through contact made using very common social media apps and it’s happening every day online, the sheriff’s office said in an impassioned plea for parents to get involved.

“When did you last speak to your kids about safe internet practices? If the answer is ‘I haven’t,’ start today. Talk to your kids about the dangers of social media.

“Look at their phones often. Do they have apps that you have never heard of? Monitor who they are talking to.

“Have difficult conversations with them about predators and the lengths they will go to target children. Let them know they have someone to talk to.”

The sheriff’s office urged parents to educate themselves as well as their children, noting the office offers classes.

“Make a resolution to attend one of our internet safety courses so that you and your children can be prepared. We will post a calendar of our 2024 classes in a few weeks. We hope to see you there!”

The office also noted “sextortion” cases, where an online poser solicits behavior or video or photos, then blackmails the victim, are on the rise this year “with no signs of slowing down.

“Never underestimate the depravity of someone who wants to victimize children. Be aware that bad people are out there, and despite our best efforts, we can’t get them all.

“Let’s work together to end this violence on the most vulnerable among us: our children.”

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