▶️ Bend PD makes 5 arrests in 90 days for luring a minor online


It is one of the sad sides of social media.

In just the last 90 days, the Bend Police Department has arrested five people for luring a minor online.

“Social media is evolving all the time,” Lt. Juli McConkey of Bend Police Department said. “That’s why it’s important for our officers to also go to training and know what people are using.”

What the suspects did not know was who was actually on the other end of the phone…a Bend police officer posing as a minor.

As a class C felony, McConkey says Oregon law is very specific about how luring a minor is defined.

She adds it is not something a suspect can simply “misunderstand,” especially when sexual photos or content are sent.

“Those people are intentionally trying to meet minors,” McConkey said. “The age is well known in the investigation.”

There is no specific task force at Bend Police for these types of investigations, but there are trained officers who take the time to hop on social media hoping to catch predators.

“It’s been very helpful for them to go to the training and bring it back to the department and to other officers to help make our community safer,” McConkey said. “I mean we all want our community to be safe and not have sexual predators intentionally reaching out to have sexual acts with minors.”

A lesson in safety for both kids and their parents.

“There are a lot of times where kids are on social media apps and their parents have no idea what the app even is,” McConkey said. “It’s important for our parents to be aware what they’re doing on their spare time.”

Bend Police suggests children talk with a trusted adult about online risks, only chat with people they know, make sure online accounts are private and block people they do not know.


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