ROSWELL, Ga – Most children are now back in school in Georgia, but not back in the classroom. Many young students are learning virtually. With limited sports and other activities, most kids are online now more than ever. Roswell Police said predators are online too.
“It’s easier to access children because they all have to be on the internet. A lot of kids have to be on the internet to go to school, it’s become a bigger problem,” said Roswell Police Officer Sean Thompson.
Roswell police have arrested dozens of child predators over the past few months. Roswell has several highly-trained detectives who are part of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. Some of them work undercover chat operations to catch predators who travel to Roswell to meet up with children for indecent purposes.
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“They come to Roswell they’re met with a bunch of police instead,” said Officer Thompson.
Detectives also work on CyberTips to the GBI. Recently, they arrested 35-year-old Miguel Angel Lopez-Gonzalez. Investigators said he had a stockpile of child pornography.
“The individual was actually making child pornography so he had some additional charges where he was physically abusing children,” said Officer Thompson.
With children spending so much time online, Officer Thompson encourages parents to take a close look at their children’s’ phones and computers. Investigators said some apps may not be what they appear to be.
“One app looks just like the calculator app but if you go into it, it’s an application that hides content in the phone like videos, pictures, and browser history. It targets kids, piques their interest so they can hide it from their parents,” said Officer Thompson.
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Roswell police said with more kids online every day during school hours, they’re pressing even harder to catch predators.
“Going after these criminals trying to protect children in Roswell,” said Officer Thompson.
It’s not just Roswell police fighting this battle. There are more than 200 local, state, and federal agencies involved in Georgia’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
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