A mother who says she discovered her 11-year-old daughter was receiving inappropriate messages from a 23-year-old man on Facebook used a photo from a Target ad to help nab the alleged predator, reports St. Petersburg, Fla., station WTSP.com.
In an interview with WTSP, the mother said she saw that, against her wishes, her daughter had opened a Facebook account.
"I unlocked her phone, and I discovered a grown man on Facebook trying to befriend her," the woman said.
The mother, who identified herself only as Caroline, said she called the alleged predator, Michael Bradley, and told him to stop. But the man continued to send her daughter messages, she told TBO.com.
"Do you know she's 11 years old?" she asked him, according to TBO. "If you keep calling my daughter, if you keep texting my daughter, I'm going to call the police and have you arrested."
Eventually, Bradley asked the girl for a nude photo, Caroline told TBO. That's when the mother set her trap by pretending to be her daughter.
"I scrolled through the Target paper. I saw a girl in her bra, so I just grabbed my cell phone, took a picture of it and sent it to him," she said.
In return, Caroline said Bradley sent nude photos to the person he thought was the girl, which was enough evidence for the St. Petersburg Police Department to make an arrest.
WTSP reports that Bradley has been charged with eight counts of "displaying obscene images to a minor and unlawful use of a two-way communication device." He's currently being held in the county jail.
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