A Minnesota man was sentenced to serve five years in a state prison on Aug. 14 for attempting to lure a person he believed to be 15 years of age to a sexual encounter. He was sentenced in Douglas County Circuit Court after pleading no contest to felony counts of child enticement and child trafficking. A charge of using a computer to facilitate a sex crime was dismissed after being read into the record. After he has completed his custodial sentence, the 51-year-old Superior resident will serve five years of supervised release. The man was given credit for the 228 days that he has already spent in custody.

Police set up sting after receiving tip

The investigation that led to the man being charged with sex crimes was launched after a woman told the Superior Police Department that a man had sent her a pornographic photograph on the social media platform Snapchat. She told officers that her Snapchat profile listed her age as 17. An investigator posing as a 15-year-old girl then contacted the man using the application to arrange a meeting. The investigator says that the man agreed to pay $50 to fondle the “teenager.”

Arrest leads to discovery of prior offense

The man was taken into custody after arriving for the rendezvous. Police say that they found $51 and the phone used to post the online messages in his truck. When they ran a records check, investigators discovered that the man had pleaded guilty to criminal sexual conduct in 1992 for kidnapping a woman from a Carlton County bar and then sexually assaulting her.

Resolving sensitive cases with plea agreements

When presented with a set of facts that could inflame a jury, experienced criminal defense attorneys might suggest seeking a resolution at the negotiating table. This usually involves pleading guilty, but attorneys may suggest entering a no-contest plea to avoid an admission of guilt if the victim is likely to file a civil lawsuit.