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NCJ Number: 217958 Find in a Library
Title: Spinning a Tale To Catch Online Predators
Journal: Law Enforcement Technology  Volume:34  Issue:3  Dated:March 2007  Pages:28,30,35
Author(s): Ronnie Garrett
Date Published: March 2007
Page Count: 7
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article contains segments of interviews with two experts in the development of police undercover online profiles and in-person interviews with online suspected pedophiles.
Abstract: Rick McGinnis, who recently joined the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor's Office in its Ohio Inernet Crimes Against Children Task Force, is trained and experienced in the development of undercover Internet identities designed to elicit contacts with child sexual predators in Internet chat rooms. This article contains his comments on what makes a good profile, how to use a profile in chat-room conversations, what predators seek in a profile, and how to use social-networking sites such as MySpace to support an online identity. He notes the importance of developing and presenting a profile of vulnerability, such as poor school performance, having a single parent, having trouble relating to parents, and being a loner. McGinnis suggests using a teen or young adult who is an experienced Internet user with a Web page in developing a realistic undercover Internet profile. Keith Durkin, who has studied and written about Internet deviancy, was also interviewed for this article. He talks about in-person interviewing techniques with suspected child sexual predators who have used the Internet to cultivate potential victims. He notes the importance of being nonjudgmental in the interview, as he advises that pedophiles are more likely to share information about their behaviors if they receive acceptance and approval from the interviewer. A confrontational style in an interview with a pedophile encourages withdrawal and/or lying.
Main Term(s): Police policies and procedures
Index Term(s): Child molesters; Child Sexual Abuse; Computer related crime; Interview and interrogation; Investigative techniques; Police interviewing training; Undercover activity; Undercover training
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