Ossipee man arrested for alleged sex chat with undercover agent posing as teen girl
September 02, 2010
OSSIPEE — An Ossipee man indicted for trying to seduce a 14-year old girl in an Internet chat room has pleaded not guilty on two felony counts in Carroll County Superior Court. That "girl" was actually an undercover officer from Florida, county officials said.
Two Carroll County Superior Court grand jury indictments accuse Steven Moran, 52, of Ossipee, of trying to meet someone he believed was a 14-year-old girl for sex and also of trying to get nude photos of a girl under 16 years old on Jan. 27, 2009. The undercover officer used the moniker "Krazygurr100" in the chat room. The indictments were handed down on July 30.
An indictment isn't an indication of guilt. Rather, it means a grand jury has found enough evidence to proceed with a trial.
A law enforcement officer from Florida began investigating Moran and then turned the information over to the Carroll County Sheriff's Office, which made the arrest, said County Attorney Robin Gordon, who could only speak generally about the case.
"Internet availability and those who prey on underage children are always concerns to law enforcement," said Gordon. "Children are at risk of being victimized."
Moran pleaded not guilty on Aug. 10 and was released on $10,000 personal recognizance bail. While released, Moran cannot have contact with anyone under 16 or have access to the Internet. Attorney Mark Sisti, of Sisti Law Offices, of Dover, is representing him.
A pretrial dispositional conference is scheduled for Sept. 22 in Carroll County Superior Court. At the conference, both sides will discuss evidence and potential motions and pleas. Moran isn't required to attend this hearing.
The Sheriff's Office has aggressively pursued cases of this nature since the 1990s through its involvement with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC), said Sheriff's Capt. David Meyers. The ICAC, funded through the U.S. Department of Justice, was involved in helping land multiple child pornography possession convictions against Wakefield resident Matthew Sizemore, said Meyers.
The Sheriff's Office has copies of an Internet safety guide for teens and parents. The safety guides, created by former New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte, says one in seven young people has received unwanted sexual solicitations online. Predators will gradually groom a child victim with the goal of having a face-to-face meeting, according to Ayotte. To avoid predators, children should refrain from putting their personal information online and should use screen names created with "MadLibs" type formulas such as combining an adjective with a noun. "Stuffedninja" was a screen name example that Ayotte used.