The Precinct 4 Constable’s Office has investigated and arrested another child predator, but this case is unusual, if not unique. The suspected claims his actions were an act of revenge against the victim’s family.
Charles Andrew Capps, 21, of New Caney is charged with second-degree felony Sexual Assault of a Child and third-degree felony Online Solicitation of a Minor
At the beginning of January, a local woman contacted the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office saying her 14-year-old daughter was receiving lewd photos from what appeared to be an adult male through Facebook. He continued sending images of his penis, using a fake name, despite being told the girl’s age. The victim’s mother had confronted the man through Facebook and he was hostile and taunting toward her, even suggesting she “call Spiderman” for help. The mother collected her own evidence to show law enforcement, taking photos of the screen where he displayed his penis and wrote inappropriate messages to her daughter.
Pct. 4 Investigators, Captain Mark Seals and Sergeant Arturo Looza were able to trace the account to an IP address belonging to a registered sex offender in New Caney. However, the registered sex offender was not the culprit. As in previous online child predator cases, the suspect was using someone else’s IP address, causing him to be the first target of an investigation into a crime he had no part in.
“This is another case that should be a wake-up call for people to use password protection and to be extremely careful who they allow to use their wireless internet,” said Pct. 4 Constable Rowdy Hayden.
The investigation continued, and on January 31, Charles Capps walked into the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office and confessed to sending photos of his penis to the 14-year-old. The 21-year-old also admitted he knew her age at the time. But Capps’ revelation did not stop there. He further stated he had sex with the teen last November, but claimed it was consensual. The act would have been criminal because of the female’s age, regardless of whether it was by force or consent.
The victim denied having consensual sex with Capps, who she knew by name, stating she was sexually assaulted by him. However, she was unaware Capps was the same person using a fake profile on Facebook, since he never showed his face while communicating with her online.
The case took an even more strange and unanticipated twist when Capps said he had sex with the 14-year-old as an act of revenge against her family, on behalf of his own. According to Capps, he was angry at the victim’s family because of an alleged sexual assault that occurred around five years ago. Capps said a female relative of his, who was around 14 then, was raped by a male relative of his victim. Capps said he held onto his hatred for the family until he saw an opportunity to “pay them back.” Capps said the girl’s mother found out and confronted him, causing him to become angrier still, and eventually create the Facebook profile he used to send the teen photos of his penis, along with harassing messages.
The District Attorney’s Office reviewed the case and an arrest warrant was issued for Capps. He was taken into custody on the afternoon of February 19 at his grandmother’s home in New Caney.
The case was the latest in a growing list of child predator investigations and arrests by the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office.
“Once we realized how widespread the issue of online child predators was, and how few agencies were educated about it and had the resources to devote to these cases, we felt obligated to do whatever we could,” Constable Hayden said. “I’m very proud of what Captain Seals and Sergeant Looza have done so far in taking predators off the streets and I know there will be many more.”
“We appreciate the assistance we’ve received from the Harris County Precinct 4 Constable’s Office and the working relationship we’ve developed with the Montgomery County Precinct 3 Constable’s Office, whose investigators are also tackling this new and increasing threat to our community’s children,” he said. “I cannot stress enough the importance of parents knowing what sites their children visit online and who they communicate with and the subject matter. It might make them angry, but not doing it might make them victims.”
Capps remains held in the Montgomery County Jail with bond set at $180,000.