Man arrested for trying to solicit teen online

Published 4:18 pm Friday, April 8, 2016

William Randal Wambles

William Randal Wambles

A Pike County man is in jail after police say he tried to solicit a teenager over the Internet.

William Randal Wambles, 46, of Brundidge was charged with two counts of transmitting obscene material to a child; one count of electronic solicitation of a child; and one county of traveling to meet a child for an unlawful sex act. He was being held in the Pike County Jail on $25,000 bond.

Wambles was arrested around lunchtime on Thursday, when he arrived in Troy for a meeting he initiated through the Internet communications.

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“This developed quickly,” Barr said. “We actually were conducting a different investigation when we stumbled across some information that led us to this individual.”

During the course of about two days, investigators were able to observe Wambles as he shared obscene materials and pushed to meet with the individual he believed to be a teenager, Barr said.

“He initiated a meeting in Troy …. And that’s when officers arrested him,” Barr said.

All four charges are felonies and, if convicted, Wambles could face a sentence of two to 20 years on each county of solicitation and transmitting obscene materials and a sentence of 10 years to life on the charge of traveling to meet a child for an unlawful sex act.

Barr said the incident should serve as a warning to parents and others in the community.

“You see it on Dateline, on NBC, on the national stories,” he said. “This is everywhere. It’s out there, and that’s why it’s so dangerous for your kids to be on the Internet and not be monitored. You never know who they are talking to.”

And, Barr said, the contact can escalate to a dangerous situation quickly. “In this case it was really about 24 hours,” he said. “It happens rather quickly … and whether it’s a dating site or something like that, when you have something go on the Internet it’s out there; you can’t ever get it back.”