The feds didn't step in, for instance, when dozens of cops were under investigation for sexting and having sex with an underage girl in Oakland, California. prosecutors have been big lately on exercising jurisdiction over both social media and sexting, and these have also been the subject of much attention in Congress lately.
Or when a Chicago cop was arrested for trafficking a 14-year-old. All of this helps suggest the decision to make this a federal matter is based more on opportunism and political agendas than the severity of O'Kimosh's crime or his threat to the public.
No adult, especially not one sworn to uphold the law, should be sexting with a teenager, let alone propositioning one.
But considering the kinds of things that cops in this country frequently get away with—murder, sexual assault, physical abuse, actual sex with minors—the severe concern in this case rings either a bit paranoid or a bit hollow.
“Your child isn’t asking about sex,” says parenting expert Betsy Brown Braun, author of _Just Tell Me What to Say: Sensible Tips and Scripts for Perplexed Parents.
_He’s wondering about relationships and types of families. A common one could be “Will I be a girl who marries a girl? ” You might also hear “I’m going to marry my best friend Andy (from a boy)!
According to FBI Agent Sarah Deamron, O'Kimosh began interacting with the girl last January through Facebook Messenger; in April he asked if he could contact her on Snapchat. At first O'Kimosh did not know the girl was only 15, but continued to discuss sexual topics with her after learning her age, "repeatedly requesting through the Snapchat application" that they meet for sexual activity.
When investigators impersonated the girl on November 1, O'Kibosh asked "her" to send an explicit photo. Sickel ordered O'Kimosh be held in a federal corrections facility pending trial, based on his "potential risk of flight due to the significant sentence that may be imposed if convicted" and on the fact that the alleged offenses happened while he was on duty as a Menominee Tribal Police officer.
The chat purportedly records a conversation between the teenager and the man, who is believed to be a monk from a temple in Nan.
The man told the boy to park his car outside a pavilion, but when the boy told him that his friend would bring him to the temple and pick him up later, the man asked whether he could also buy sexual services from the friend.
When the boy said no, the man replied he would have sex with them both.
Not only does it take away from matters that be handled by local law enforcement, but it subjects those convicted to incredibly harsh prison sentences.
And that should concern you even if the plight of someone like O'Kimosh really doesn't, because pushing prison time above and beyond what's required for public safety and/or rehabilitation is how we exacerbate America's mass incarceration problem.