Not at all thrilled that their 17-year-old daughter was dating a registered sex offender, two concerned parents in Skagit County, Wash. decided to set up a Facebook bear trap to expose their daughter's 19-year-old beau as an unsavory character. After a little internet sleuthing, Jesper and Julie Myrfors found out that charming new boyfriend William Elms, aka Liam, aka Corrupting Influence on Precious Feminine Youth, was a Level 1 sex offender. So, being well-versed in the Chris Hansen school of awkward confrontations with creepy people, the Myrfors set up a fake Facebook profile for a 15-year-old girl, who they linked to a mutual friend of their daughter's.
Unsettling though it may be for one's child to be unwittingly dating a (low risk) sex offender, posing as a 15-year-old girl on the internet is its own brand of creepy, even if doing so helps avoid a potentially messier problem later on. The Myrfors say they were worried about their daughter "getting into a dangerous situation" with someone who had a history of sexual transgression, but instead of talking to their daughter, they set up their Facebook sting without her knowing about it (and without any police involvement, btw).
Elms eventually proved himself to be just as unsavory as the Myrfors suspected — after some Facebook exchanges, he began sending the nonexistent 15-year-old explicit messages and pictures, which gave the Myrfors all the evidence they needed to persuade their daughter to break up with him. The Myrfors then turned their findings over to police, who arrested Elms for violating the terms of his probation. He'll face charges of Immoral Conduct with a Minor, and while no one is going to lose any sleep over Elms getting in more trouble for sending dick-pics to an underage girl, the Myrfors don't exactly emerge from this story as the vigilant guardians of unspoiled youth because for two adults to impersonate an underage girl and coax a sex offender to reveal his true colors requires a dangerous brand of moral self righteousness.
Mom stings daughter's boyfriend on Facebook [Skagit Valley Herald]