California man arrested after online threats against Nova Scotia child

RCMP release:

In May 2023, West Hants RCMP received two calls from an eight-year-old who bravely told the call taker that someone was threatening to hurt them and their family unless they sent intimate images through a social platform.

Cst. Walsh, as the responding officer, attended the child’s home for more information and to collect any evidence from the device being used to access the social platform.

The information and evidence collected clearly indicated someone was attempting to exploit and extort the child and had sent the victim intimate images.

Through the course of the investigation, the West Hants RCMP General Investigation Section confirmed the suspect’s IP address and its originating location of California.

Investigators, with assistance of the Nova Scotia RCMP Internet Child Exploitation Unit, then sought the support of the United States Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) based at the US Embassy in Ottawa.

The collaborative efforts that started with the victim, their parent and Cst. Walsh led to HSI identifying the suspect and obtaining a warrant for his arrest.

In May 2024, HSI Sacramento arrested a 38-year-old man in California who admitted to victimizing more than 20 children, including the child who courageously reported the incident to West Hants RCMP.

The RCMP encourages citizens to be a voice for children who are victims of sexual exploitation by reporting any suspected offences to their local police or by using Canada’s National tipline for reporting online sexual exploitation of children at Survivor supports are available, including through Victim Services.

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