Police track down accused repeat ‘child predator’ in Erlanger
ERLANGER, Ky. (WXIX) - Police on Tuesday arrested a Northern Kentucky man after the father of an underage boy he targeted for sexual exploitation tracked him down using Snapchat, according to court documents.
The investigation into Roger Uhl’s internet activity found he was talking online with juveniles, Kentucky State Police says.
“This is a unique case,” said Kenton County Prosecutor Rob Sanders. “This is one I’ve warned parents about for a while.”
According to a police affidavit, the investigation began in November 2020 when Homeland Security Investigations Northern Kentucky received a tip about a suspected “child predator.”
The suspect was later identified as Uhl, according to police. Uhl is a registered sex offender who moved from Florida to Kentucky, the registry shows.
The affidavit states Uhl had been communicating with a 12-year-old over Playstation, a game console system with an online network that allows text messages and voice chats.
Police say Uhl contacted the boy using the voice chat feature. Uhl asked about the boy’s “physical characteristics, if he was lonely and if he was allowed to have a girlfriend,” according to the affidavit.
The voice chat was overheard by the boy’s grandmother and father, police say.
The father also allegedly heard the Uhl on the Playstation communicating with another female user, asking that user personal questions. The father told police he heard the female user told him Uhl had sent pictures to her over Snapchat.
The father found a Snapchat user with the same name as that Uhl allegedly used on Playstation and used Snapchat location services to pinpoint the user to a home in Erlanger.
Homeland Security identified Uhl as the home’s inhabitant.
Police confronted Uhl at the home, where he admitted he had contacted children online and said there would be images of nude children on his cell phone.
After getting a search warrant for Uhl’s home, electronic equipment was confiscated and taken to KSP’s digital forensic laboratory.
Uhl is charged with prohibited use of an electronic communication system to procure a minor in a sexual offense, state police said.
He is now in the Kenton County Detention Center.
Uhl will appear in court on July 1, according to jail records.
Sanders advises parents to monitor what their kids are doing online.
“Make sure there’s nothing dangerous or worrisome going on in those games that your children are playing,” he said.
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