West Seattle Crime Watch: Sex-sting arrest in restaurant parking lot

ORIGINAL REPORT, 1:43 PM: You might have seen/heard regional-media reports last night about a 60-year-old man described as an Everett firefighter, arrested in a Seattle sex sting. Seattle Police have just released a little more information about the case, including noting that the arrest happened in West Seattle. This afternoon’s SPD Blotter report says the man was arrested …

… Wednesday afternoon after he showed up for a rendezvous with an underage prostitute, who turned out to be an undercover detective.

The Vice/High-Risk Victims Unit (HRVU) detective had exchanged messages with the 60-year-old firefighter during an online sting targeting men looking for sex with underage girls, and the man had agreed to meet up for sex.

The suspect showed up to meet what he believed was an underage prostitute in West Seattle, and detectives took him into custody.

We expect to have more information after the man’s bail hearing this afternoon and will update this report.

3:41 PM: We have just received the court document with the police account of what happened, following the suspect’s bail hearing (he’s now held in lieu of $50,000 bail). Will transcribe here. First, to answer your most likely question, already asked in comments (and we had a call out to police, as-yet unanswered), “where did this happen?”: The initial rendezvous was set to happen in the Taco Time parking lot in The Triangle, and the suspect was expecting to follow his contact (the nonexistent 15-year-old’s “father”) to an apartment from there. Adding …

This is the story told by the detective who wrote the narrative:

He “placed an ad on a popular fetish website’s personals section” one week ago today. “A few days later,” the suspect contacted him, via e-mail (which included his real name and title “Fire Medic”). The undercover detective told the suspect he “had a 15-year-old daughter who has sex with older men in exchange for US currency.” They continued communicating, and finally agreed that “defendant agreed to pay $150 for sex with a minor female child.” The e-mails, the detective wrote, were very specific regarding what types of sex. The defendant agreed to meet the “father” yesterday at a pre-determined location around noon, then to follow him back to a nearby (location not specified) apartment, park in a “secured parking garage,” go up to an apartment, and engage in the specified sex acts for the specified price.

“Surveillance units” were in place at 11:50 am at the pre-determined location, and “observed defendant arrive at the Taco Time and park facing the agreed-upon meet location. (The detective), who was posing as the father of the 15-year-old minor female, was standing outside the store at the agreed-upon meet location. Defendant intimated that he was nearby and asked (the detective) to bring the 15-year-old down to him. Surveillance units ran the plate of the vehicle defendant was driving and it came back to defendant being the registered owner.” (The document says the suspect had told police he would be driving a black Audi TT.)

After the “surveillance units” identified the person in the vehicle as the 60-year-old suspect, the narrative says, uniformed police arrived and arrested him. He agreed to a search of his car, in which police say they found various sex-related accessories, some of which had been bought at an Everett store less than an hour earlier per a receipt found in the car, as well as Viagra and Cialis. They also say he had $160 in cash on his person.

He’s being held for investigation of commercial sexual abuse of a minor and felony communicating with a minor for immoral purposes. The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office will have to decide by tomorrow whether to charge him.

FRIDAY UPDATE, 5 PM: We don’t have official word on whether charges were filed – the court system lags – but we did find via the King County Jail Register that the suspect posted bond and got out of jail last night.

24 Replies to "West Seattle Crime Watch: Sex-sting arrest in restaurant parking lot"

  • alki resident November 20, 2014 (3:13 pm)

    Holy crap,where was the sting? He no doubt will lose his job.

    • WSB November 20, 2014 (3:15 pm)

      That would be one of the questions I hope the post-hearing document will answer. I have a message out to SPD to ask but no reply yet.

  • SillyGoose November 20, 2014 (3:18 pm)

    This just made my day, keep up the great work SPD, glad you got one more creep off the streets, ask him how aroused he is now that he has been exposed to his family, community, MOTHER, FATHER, teachers etc. Real big man now aren’t you!!!

  • Cynthia Fields November 20, 2014 (4:22 pm)

    Just threw up in my mouth a bit. RUFKM?

  • WSborn&bred November 20, 2014 (4:28 pm)

    It’s good that another predator is off our streets, but it’s still so sad to read. Thanks for always keeping us well-informed WSB.

  • Pam November 20, 2014 (4:30 pm)

    What a SOB

  • Amy Boos November 20, 2014 (5:37 pm)

    Why in the world is bail only $50,000??? It should be at least $500,000!!! I am beyond outraged and disgusted!

  • Michelle November 20, 2014 (6:29 pm)

    My greatest outrage while reading this story is the last statement saying. We will decide tomorrow whether to charge him!!!! Confused? Why bother to do all the work and effort. Totally do not understand that comment. Someone please explain? What a wasted to do all of that and let him go. Maybe the city does not want another City employee caught in a embarrassing situation? You tell me?

    • WSB November 20, 2014 (6:51 pm)

      Michelle, it’s up to the prosecuting attorney’s office to decide if there is enough evidence to charge a suspect. If they don’t file charges by this deadline, it doesn’t mean the suspect will never be charged – sometimes charges are filed later.

  • Steve November 20, 2014 (7:31 pm)

    My thought too Michelle. I would think for anyone this would be hook, line, and sinker. But maybe since it’s a Firefighter things work differently, if at all. Yeah, Im a cynic.

  • steve November 20, 2014 (7:46 pm)

    This made me remember the sleeping homeless man that was beaten in Pioneer Square about a year ago, by a woman and two firefighters. No charges. But the Fire dept. issued this quote. — Seattle Fire Chief Gregory Dean apologized to the public for the two firefighters’ alleged involvement in the incident. Dean said firefighters are supposed to protect the public, “not put them in harm’s way.”

  • wetone November 20, 2014 (9:16 pm)

    Interesting how police picked W/S for meeting spot. I wonder if that is because of all the issues we have had and are having, making the meeting spot here more believable for this type of activity …… He is still on the pay roll collecting his normal salary last I heard.
    Michelle your exactly right. I would bet if this was you or I in same position story would be a little different than “We will see whether to charge him…………… ; )

    • WSB November 20, 2014 (9:27 pm)

      Wetone and Michelle, no, it would not. This is standard policy and I’ve written it into stories dozens of times. Once someone is arrested, **by law** there is a certain period by which they must be charged or released, possibly to be charged later.

  • wscommuter November 20, 2014 (9:29 pm)

    Michelle and Steve – your ill-informed comments are really remarkable and you clearly do not understand our legal system. The police make arrests – but only the King County Prosecutor’s Office can file those felony charges. And the process of filing felony charges takes some time – even for “rush” charges on serious crimes.

    And bail for a crime like this, where presumably this person has no prior criminal history and is not perceived to be a flight risk is pretty standard at $50,000.

    Relax and unclench. He will be charged and he’s clearly going away for a while. But please don’t feed hysterical public ignorance with your really inaccurate comments.

  • ACG November 20, 2014 (10:14 pm)

    Looks like he is an Everett firefighter (not Seattle). Bail set at $50,000. (Per Seattle Times story)

    • WSB November 20, 2014 (10:21 pm)

      ACG, we have never referred to him as a Seattle firefighter. Please see the story, where you will also see that we reported the bail amount almost seven hours ago. We obtained that information directly from the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, no other media citations required. – TR

  • Heather November 20, 2014 (10:25 pm)

    I am thankful they could make an arrest by matching the plates with the mans identity w/o his exiting his vehicle. The whole potential interaction is revolting and makes me furious. I applaud the people who pose and interact with these perps – I imagine a very difficult job.

  • Redemption November 21, 2014 (4:31 am)

    Attention family & friends of those arrested. Law enforcement are running illegal sex stings, posting ads on adult dating sites, switching age later and entrapping people who showed no intent to engage with minors. We are a group of activists fighting these stings and you are welcome to check out the info on our blog governingus. Please search online: sex sting backlash, for the news stories. Here are Grounds for Motions to Dismiss or Suppress:
    1. Objective entrapment.
    2. Violation of due process.
    3. Unauthorized use of a website without license.
    4. Challenged definition of a minor.
    5. Failure to set proper guidelines & rules in conducting sting operations that contradict or contravene cardinal law and constitutional rights including 1st, 4th, 5th Amendment rights.
    6. Non-compliance with ICAC guidelines: setting tone & pace, false advertising, bringing their own equipment, involving LE personnel who
    have not undergone ICAC training & certification, involving Military personnel like USAF OSI [criminal violation of Posse Comitatus Act]
    7. Breach of software security (of adults classifieds) by LE, subverting online security mechanisms.
    8. Violation of contract law, ToU of classifieds or dating websites. Proof: Removal of LE’s ad by website, precisely for said violations.
    9. Inducement by LE.
    10. Bait & switch.
    11. Misrepresentation
    12. Warrantless surveillance
    13. Cyber stalking & identity querying without reasonable suspicion or probable cause.
    14. Perjury on search warrants (if any) regarding the existence of minor or intent of defendant.
    15. Fabricated fictional beliefs actively pushed onto defendant – prosecuting fantasy.
    16. Non-existing victim who was the one doing the actual predation, solicitation & luring.
    17. Non-existing actions of commission of crime (actus reus).
    18. Non-existing intent (mens rea).
    19. Deception, scheming, subverting intent of ICAC law.
    20. Reverse engineering of evidence, sequence of events & criminalizing free speech.
    21. Unwarranted virtue testing & test of will. Falsely charging men who fail as predators & felons.
    22. Institutional Racketeering for Federal grant funds – ICAC funds, OJJDP, DoJ.

  • Michelle November 21, 2014 (6:55 am)

    Thank-You WSB for helping me understand how the legal process works.

  • 2 Much Whine November 21, 2014 (11:27 am)

    Redemption, I have a feeling that you’re not going to find a lot of support here but I might be wrong. I’m just going to grab some popcorn and watch for a bit.

  • Slow Fat Triathlete November 21, 2014 (3:31 pm)

    My first reaction was “how could somebody believe that a father was offering to pimp out his 15 year old daughter?” When the realization sank in that it must be happening or the police wouldn’t have created a sting using that premise, it made my skin crawl. I can understand why a pathetic 60-year old might seek sex with an anonymous teenager, but that anyone could push their own child into a situation like that – what is our world coming to? (I know, this was not a real dad nor a real 15 year old – it is just sickening that the premise was believable to anyone.)

  • drahcir61 November 23, 2014 (10:56 am)

    wscommuter – thank you!!! I was shaking my head at those same comments … AFLAC!!! lol

  • Grossed Out November 28, 2014 (5:38 pm)

    WSB, please delete Redemption’s comment. Sex addicts need to be trapped and rehabilitated. No one should be trolling sex ads, period. It’s sick in every imaginable way.

  • Dietrich November 29, 2014 (8:50 pm)

    Thanks for the detailed update on this WSB. Yeah, we have a justice System for a reason: So we don’t rely on rumors, mobs, pitchforks and such in out justice. It’s a process, and we don’t hang folks until someone gets a proper trial. Otherwise the justice system can be used upon good, law-biding folk to bring them down.

    Lastly, Redemption, Lord almighty be glad we have a justice system as statements like the one you make above do not make you and friend of many folks around here, including me.

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