Ryan Hanford Thorn – Repeat Sex Offender Stalked girls on MySpace

A Lansing man is facing sexual assault charges, and police believe the victim list may tally more than 20 statewide, with at least seven coming from Carson City Crystal High School.

“It was on a MySpace page. Just some girls were talking on the Internet and some guy got into it,” said Toni McCowen, a student at the school.

Students say there has been a crackdown on their computer access in school.

“We were trying to get into it ’cause we had a few extra minutes, and she just said that there were pedophiles trying to talk to younger girls, trying to get them to skip and stuff,” adds fellow classmate Tabetha Shinabarger.

This all dates back to October 2007 when a teacher picked up on sexually explicit Internet chat and tipped off police.

Now, Carson City Police Chief Jeff Hilliker says Ryan Hanford Thorn – a man with many aliases and a registered sex offender in California and Michigan – is locked up behind bars. He has been charged in Montcalm County with first-degree criminal sexual conduct – taking sexually explicit pictures and posting them online.

Thorn’s motive, Carson City Police Chief Jeff Hilliker says, is that he claims to be a Navy Seal, talks to teen girls online and tries to set up a meeting.

“He, at a drop of a dime, would go wherever, if he could get someone to meet with him,” Chief Hilliker told 24 Hour News 8.

The chief said authorities learned more of Thorn’s obsession when they searched his home. Documents and pictures led investigators to believe Thorn has made some type of contact with more than 20 girls across the state, including in Carson City, Belding, Battle Creek, Monroe and Ithaca.

There are possibly seven cases in Carson City – one dealing with accusations of sex, pictures and posting them on the Web.

The chief says they couldn’t identify some of the girls in the photos they found.

If you have any information about these cases you are asked to call the Carson City Police Department at (989) 584-3515 Michigan State Police Computer Crimes Unit: 1-877-5CYBER3 (529-2373).

“25% of all sex offenders re-offend within 15 years”
………Sarah Tofte

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