Convicted sex offender withheld information from registry

Convicted sex offender Michael Wayne Ingram, arrested over the weekend for driving while intoxicated with five male juveniles in his car, gave “false information,” according to Metro Police, to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation’s sex offender registry about his ownership of a vehicle.

Metro Police did not discover Ingram’s incorrect sex offender registry information in June when they arrested him for driving a vehicle with stolen tags. According to police records, Ingram “reported no change in the vehicle portion of the registry, which had no vehicles owned by or driven by the offender.”

Ingram in fact was still in possession of the vehicle in September when he was convicted of a misdemeanor for use of a stolen license plate.

Police officials said yesterday the nature of the traffic stop in June might not have warranted an “intense” background search like the one officers performed Saturday, when Ingram was with the juveniles.

“The officers on Saturday morning had alarms going off all over,” said Don Aaron, Metro Police spokesman.

Hermitage precinct officers stopped Ingram early Saturday morning on suspicions of drunk driving and according to the arresting affidavit, the defendant “almost fell down on several occasions just standing.”

The five juveniles, ranging in age from 12-13, were in the vehicle and officers discovered that none of them had any relation to the defendant, according to police records. Aaron confirmed the children with Ingram for a “good three hours.”

As a convicted sex offender, on the registry since 1991 for aggravated rape involving a child, Ingram is required to check in with the state on a quarterly basis.

At that time, he is required to divulge any new information about his residence or vehicle.

Police records show that Ingram reported for the registry in June and September, both times failing to report he was in possession of a vehicle.

He is charged with two count of sex offender registry violations, as well as driving under the influence, possession of drug paraphernalia, assault and reckless endangerment and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Aaron said officers at the scene were “shocked at what they found” after realizing Ingram was a sex offender driving five juveniles in his car to show them his “mansion,” according to the police affidavit.

Police confirmed yesterday that they suspect one of the juveniles met the defendant through MySpace, a social networking Web site popular with teens.

Aaron said Ingram was not under any court order that would have prevented him from visiting the sight, or limited his Internet access.

One Metro Youth Services Detective said although he doesn’t see these types of cases very often, it’s important for parents to monitor their child’s computer use to prevent any connect with sex offenders.

“It’s absolutely scary,” said Det. Kevin Cooley about Ingram’s contact with one of the juveniles via the Internet.

He suggests never letting a child have computer access in their rooms privately, allowing the child to chat online unsupervised.

“If the computer’s in their room, it basically takes the child molester or the predator from the front door and puts them right into their bedroom so they can alone, one-on-one time with this child,” Cooley said.

Aaron said patrol officers had no indication that any of the juveniles had been drinking or using drugs at the time of Ingram’s arrest. He said the Metro Police Sex Crimes unit is currently working with the boys, along with the Department of Child Services, to “ensure nothing occurred.”

Ingram is set to appear before a Davidson County General Sessions Judge in the next two days.

Published in: on December 13, 2007 at 4:07 pm  Leave a Comment  

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