John E Hargrove – MySpace Predator – Facing Life Sentence

A 50-year-old Bristol man who was convicted earlier this month on three counts of using his computer to sexually exploit children, is facing a sentence of life in prison.

John E Hargrove, under the screen names “sun warrior48” and “master_4younger_f_slave,” used instant messaging from his computer to lure four different minor females into chats in late 2006 and early 2007, according to documents revealed in U.S. District Court.

Evidence revealed in the three-day trial that ended Oct. 3 showed that Hargrove approached the victims after viewing their profile pages on MySpace. Of the four girls, two were actual teenage females and two were undercover law enforcement officers.

Evidence was presented at trial that Hargrove used the Internet to transfer images of child pornography. The photos were of a teen with whom he had an online relationship. The 15-year-old testified at the trial.

“In this case, a very brave girl took the stand to testify against the defendant and proved that victims will stand up for themselves and their rights,” said Sharon L. Potter, U.S. attorney for the district, who oversaw the prosecution.

Other evidence at the trial included that Hargrove transmitted images depicting sado-masochistic activity and that he used the Internet to entice a girl he believed to be 14 years old to travel to Connecticut to engage in illegal sexual activity.

Hargrove remains in custody in West Virginia awaiting sentencing.

“This case reinforces the message of Internet safety to our youth,” Potter said. “Just as would-be sexual predators may believe an undercover law enforcement officer is a child, these predators also pretend to be a peer and develop a trusting relationship with unsuspecting children.”

The case stemmed from the federal Project Safe Childhood with investigation by the Hampshire County sheriff’s office, the FBI and the Waterbury and Glastonbury police departments.

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. I was the 15 year old girl in this case. Thank you for everything you’re doing to pretect children like me. People like you guys saved my life.

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