Men involved in sex sting operation face grand jury

Published 9:24 am Thursday, December 21, 2017

Editor’s note: Since this story was published, the charges against Larry J. Parrott have been dismissed with prejudice and his record has been expunged.

A Boyle County grand jury indicted 11 men arrested through a sex sting operation on Dec. 14.

Six of the men face at least one felony charge of unlawful use of electronic means to induce a minor to engage in sexual or other prohibited activities, a Class D felony.

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Dequan brown, 23, of 269 Kelly Way in Lebanon; and Shawn Williams, 39, 114 Scott Street #D, Springfield, were each indicted on two counts of the charge. 

Hubert Carter, 52, of 2410 Woodlawn in Ennis, Texas; Michael Cruse, 46, of 102 Newbell Road #T6 in Columbus, Missouri; Richard Fransen, 38, of 16508 Tauton Vale in Louisville; and Andrew Hardin, 26, of 905 Josh Cox Road in Lebanon were all indicted on one count of the charge.

Five others were indicted on misdemeanor charges. All five face one count of third-degree criminal attempt to commit an unlawful transaction with a minor, for allegedly attempting to induce a law enforcement officer posing as a minor to disobey his parents, while believing the officer to be a minor under the age of 18. Those five are:

• Joseph Brown, 49, of 119 Rolling Hills in Danville — also indicted for resisting arrest and third-degree escape; bond was set at $2,000; no court date is set.

• Fredrick Hilpp, 28, of 501 Indian Creek Road in Lebanon — bond was set at $2,000; he is scheduled to appear in court 9 a.m. Jan. 2.

• Justin Jones, 40, of 496 Will Chancellor Road in Stanford — bond was set at $2,000; no court date is set.

• Larry Parrott, 39, of 3263 Lawrenceburg Road in Willisburg — bond was set at $2,000; he is scheduled to appear in court 9 a.m. Jan. 9.

• Mark Shelton, 33, of 555 Fairgrounds Road in Stanford — bond was set at $2,000; he is scheduled to appear in court 9 a.m. Feb. 13.

Eight of the men were originally arrested in October, after the Boyle County Sheriff’s Office launched a sting operation, using a deputy posing as a juvenile on social media. 

The sheriff’s office created a profile of a juvenile on a social media app that parents had expressed concerns about.

“We created the profile and almost immediately people began contacting us,” Robbins said in late October. “They were adults and didn’t hide the fact that they were adults … Even through all of the conversations it was made clear that the (profile) was a juvenile.”

The men arranged meets with deputies through the app, expecting to meet a juvenile, according to the sheriff’s office.

The sheriff’s office confirmed in late November it had continued its sting operation and arrested three more men accused of trying to meet up with deputies posing as a juvenile.