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Monday, October 08, 2012

Ind. Courts - "Local cases point out dangers of Internet: Portability of devices adds to risk for kids"

In Sunday's Fort Wayne Journal Gazette is a long story by Rebecca S. Green, using as its focus two local cases of sexual exploitation of children who are online. Some quotes:

[T]wo recent local criminal cases have generated conversations and concern, and they have put renewed emphasis on the need for parents or guardians to pay attention to how students use the technology – regardless of whether it came from the home or school.

According to federal court documents, Nathan Hasty set up phony Facebook accounts, portraying himself as both a teenage boy and a teenage girl.

Using those identities, Hasty, a 34-year-old Huntington man who until the criminal investigation was a Campus Life director for Fort Wayne Area Youth for Christ, solicited naked pictures from 12- to 14-year old boys in his youth group.

Hasty flirted and cajoled, gave them phone numbers where they could text pictures of themselves and in some cases asked them to perform sex acts in front of a Web camera, according to court documents.

When FBI agents knocked on his door in late September, Hasty admitted to using the fake Facebook accounts, saying he communicated with more than 10 boys and had targeted children who were members of his youth groups, according to court documents.

He worked for Fort Wayne Area Youth for Christ at Huntington’s Crestview and Riverview middle schools.

Hasty remains in the Allen County Jail, held on federal charges related to the possession of child pornography. If convicted of the charges, he faces no less than five years in prison. The matter remains under investigation, and since news of Hasty’s arrest broke, other families have surfaced and reported potential contacts with Hasty to the local office of the FBI.

Meanwhile, about 50 miles north in DeKalb County, 29-year-old Jason Lee Schwartz faces a host of state charges, both felonies and misdemeanors, accusing him of multiple sexual contacts with young girls.

Among the 22 charges, Schwartz is charged with child molesting, sexual misconduct with a minor, possession of child pornography and tattooing a minor.

According to court documents, Schwartz texted girls as young as 13, gave some teens tattoos in exchange for sex and threatened to publish naked photographs of the girls on Facebook if they did not comply with his demands for sex.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on October 8, 2012 10:54 AM
Posted to Indiana Courts