A mother who was passing through a transit center with her toddler in Shoreline, Washington, revealed to police she was approached by a man who wanted to purchase her son.
The mother, who was walking with her 2-year-old son through Aurora Village Transit Center, was approached by a man who offered her $1,500 in exchange for the child. The mother, of course, refused but what she did next is being praised with helping police track down the suspect.
The encounter happened on September 22. The mom remained calm — and declined to “sell” her son, but played along with the man’s proposition long enough to convince him she was not scared of his proposition.
The mother then requested the man’s email and cell phone number, just “in case she changed her mind.” The split-second choice proved to come in handy. The man bought it — believing she was actually considering his offer.
But the mother cleverly turned over the info to the King County Sheriff’s Office, which led police right to the man’s door.
A detective posing as the mom then reached out to the stranger. The investigator claimed to be just 17 years old, according to a release from the Metro Transit Police Street Crimes Unit. And with that news, the man reportedly changed his tune.
Almost immediately, he was no longer interested in purchasing her 2-year-old. But instead, attempted to convince the mom (aka the police detective) to work for him as a prostitute.
The 43-year-old was finally arrested last Monday. It happened just after the detective arranged to meet the man, still pretending she was the mother.
And when the man showed, police promptly arrested him on suspicion of promoting commercial sexual abuse of a minor. But that wasn’t all.
Right after his arrest, the man allegedly asked to make a phone call — where he requested a friend to clean out his hotel room.
While on the call, he was unaware police were monitoring his conversation — so they go to the room before the friend. And inside, they discovered a stolen firearm.
It is not clear if the man, whose name is still being withheld by authorities, will face any further charges.
A spokesperson for the King County Sheriff’s Office, Sgt. Ryan Abbott, states this story is yet another reminder of how close to home child sex trafficking is.
“We still see it often and it’s something that we still take very seriously,” he told King 5 this week.
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.