The Latest: White House calls sexting charges ‘disgusting’

14 Nov 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Secret Service agent accused of sexting with minor sent graphic photo, wanted something ‘exciting’.

DOVER, Del. DOVER, Del. (AP) — In a case marking the latest embarrassment for the agency that protects the president and his family, a uniformed Secret Service officer has posted bail on state charges of trying to solicit a teenage girl for sex but he’s still being held in federal custody.This booking photo provided by the Delaware Department of Justice shows Lee Robert Moore, a Secret Service agent from Maryland accused of sending obscene images and texts to someone he thought was a young Delaware girl. Defense attorney John Barber waived the preliminary hearing after meeting with Moore in a courthouse detention cell, but he declined to comment afterward.

Moore, who was arrested Monday, was released from state custody Tuesday after posting $105,000 secured bail, but he remains in custody on a separate federal charge of attempted transfer of obscene material to a minor. His arrest brings new scrutiny to a federal agency already reeling from a series of scandals stretching back to 2012, when more than a dozen agents and officers were implicated in a South American prostitution scandal.

Former agency director Julia Pierson was ousted last year after the disclosure of two security breaches, including an incident in which a man armed with a knife was able to scale a White House fence and run deep into the executive mansion. The Secret Service said Moore’s security clearance was suspended on Nov. 6, the same day the matter was reported to its Office of Professional Responsibility.

According to federal authorities, Moore reached out in August to an undercover detective posing as a 14-year-old girl on the social media application “Meet24.” They subsequently agreed to communicate using the social media app “Kik,” which allows the exchange of images and videos. “Moore soon moved the chats sexual,” Detective Kevin McKay wrote in an affidavit. “He stated he wanted to travel to Delaware and meet in person for sex. Moore made it clear that he knew I was a 14 yr old girl.” The affidavit, as well as the federal complaint, go on to describe graphic communications that Moore allegedly had with undercover officers, including sending a picture of his erect penis. He also admitted that he had communicated with other “Meet24” users he thought to be minor girls. “In particular, Moore stated that he had an (sic) sexual interest in 14 year-old females and had engaged such individuals in online chats about sexual matters,” wrote Patrick McCall, a special agent with Homeland Security Investigations.

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