Georgia – An elderly man from Georgia, a retired school teacher, will spend more than three years in federal prison after confessing he went out of state to meet an underage girl, he wanted to have an intimate relationship with. This case sparked a lot of debate, making parents of minors furious as safety concerns grow.
States are proactively working to punish predators
Just recently, Florida lawmakers proposed a bill that would protect minors from sexual predators. Under Senate Bill 1196, the state of Florida is looking forward to increasing penalties for groomers and predators, creating new guidelines for smartphone and tablet manufacturers, and working to target people who have “sexually explicit” online conversations with minors.
According to a press release from the Department of Justice, 75-year-old Leroy Lawrence Bolger decided in 2022 to travel to South Carolina to meet a 13-year-old girl and have an intimate relationship with her. According to the available court records, Bolger got in touch with the girl’s father online, and he was the one who was allegedly seeking male individuals to have sex with his minor daughter. What Bolger didn’t know at the time was that the father and the daughter didn’t exist in reality. Authorities in South Carolina, who are actively working to impose sanctions on people like Bolger, created the online persona.
The whole operation was conducted by the South Carolina Attorney General’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC), including Homeland Security Investigations.
Bolger though he was talking online with girl’s father before heading to the agreed location
Bolger easily became a victim of this operation. He responded to the advertisement he saw online and engaged in sexually explicit conversations with the undercover officer. After clearly showing his desire to get in touch with the minor girl and agreeing to pay as little as $50 to have sexual intercourse with her, Bolger headed to South Carolina on March 1, 2022, to finally meet the father and the girl. When Bolger arrived at the previously agreed-upon location, several law enforcement employees were already there, and he was immediately taken into custody.
Bolger admitted that he had planned to engage in illicit sexual conduct with the girl. He also stated that he was a retired teacher and athletics coach who had worked in schools in North Carolina and Florida during his 38-year career.
Bolger is sentenced to nearly four years in federal prison
United States District Judge Bruce Howe Hendricks sentenced Bolger to 46 months of imprisonment, to be followed by a lifetime term of court-ordered supervision. There is no parole in the federal system.