Tuesday, October 23, 2018     Volume: 19, Issue: 33

Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on January 9th, 2018, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 18, Issue 45 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 18, Issue 45

Santa Maria man arrested for soliciting sex from minors


A Santa Maria man is being held on a $150,000 bail at the Santa Barbara County Jail for allegedly soliciting sex from minors.

On Jan. 2, Santa Barbara County Sheriff deputies arrested Trevor Ferrel, 31, for arranging and eventually attempting to meet a minor to engage in sex acts, the office said in a statement.

The Sheriff’s Office said Ferrel used an alias Facebook profile “to victimize young females.” An investigation by the office’s Human Trafficking Unit discovered in August 2017 that Ferrel would use the false identity to contact minors and teenage girls and “attempt to solicit nude pictures and to get them to meet and participate in various sex acts.”

The Sheriff’s Office said that when Ferrel received nude pictures, he would threaten to post them publicly online or notify the girls’ parents. Ferrel also would offer to pay money for sex, the office said.

In September 2017, Ferrel began corresponding with an undercover detective posing as a minor. The Sheriff’s Office said he negotiated with the investigator and “arranged to meet and exchange money for specific sex acts.” The meeting never occured but the undercover investigator continued to “follow up on information,” the office said.

Eventually, the detective served a search warrant related to Ferrel’s alias social media account, which showed several other attempts by the man to contact “high school aged females, solicit nude pictures, and meet them in order to participate in sex acts.”

In December, the same undercover officer again made contact with Ferrel and negotiated to meet to exchange money for specific sex acts. The Sheriff’s Office said in a statement that at this time a specific location, date, and time was scheduled for the two to meet in person.

Just after 2 p.m. on Jan. 2, Ferrel arrived at the location where he was immediately contacted by investigators and arrested. He was booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail later that day.

The Sheriff’s Office said it believed there is strong likelihood Ferrel had victimized additional minors. The Sheriff’s Office asked for those with any information on the case to contact the Human Trafficking Unit at (805) 934-6245 or send an email to humantrafficking@sbsheriff.org. To leave an anonymous tip, call (805) 681-4171 or go to sbsheriff.org/home/anonymous-tip/.

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