McKenzie man among 25 arrested in Fla. child sex sting

Published: Jun. 28, 2011 at 8:15 PM CDT
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Jason Halford (Source: Pensacola Police Dept.)
Jason Halford (Source: Pensacola Police Dept.)

PENSACOLA, FLA. (WSFA) - A McKenzie man is among 25 individuals arrested in a Florida sex sting operation involving the internet and children.

Jason Halford, 36, is charged with using a computer to solicit parent/guardian consent, travel to meet/use computer to solicit guardian, and using a 2-way communication device to facilitate a felony.

Halford was arrested after the sex sting operation was set up in a house in Pensacola, Florida.

Florida local, state and federal agents started the sting on June 20 and arrested more than 2 dozen suspects during its week-long run.

Authorities say agents posed undercover as 12-14 year old boys and girls and then used various social networking sites to respond and post advertisements of a sexual nature.

Agents said the suspects specifically described various acts they wanted to perform to the agents, whom they believed were minors. All but one of the suspects drove to the house where agents were holding the operation. Each was arrested on the scene.

"We expected to have more violators traveling from outside the [Pensecola, Florida] area," said Pensacola Police Capt. Paul Kelly. Only two of the suspects were from Alabama, the other being a suspect from Mobile.

Kelly said, "Most of them were not reluctant or frightened to approach the door of a stranger's house. They literally pulled up to the house and walked quickly to the door eager to meet the child."

To see more information on this sting, CLICK HERE.