Police arrest 9 accused of child sexual exploitation

Police arrest 9 accused of child sexual exploitation
(WBTV graphic)

SIERRA VISTA, AZ (KOLD News 13) - Sierra Vista police partnered with local, state, and federal agencies in a joint operation that resulted in the arrests of nine people suspected of using the internet to lure a minor for sexual exploitation.

The suspects were charged at the federal and state levels for various crimes related to luring minors for sexual activity or having minors take sexually explicit photos.

Wayne Hawkins of Hereford was arrested on Tuesday, Feb. 12 and booked into the Cochise County Jail on charges of aggravated luring a minor for sexual exploitation, luring a minor for sexual exploitation, and attempted sexual conduct with a minor.

Kevin Echternach of Sierra Vista was arrested on Wednesday, Feb. 13 and booked into the Cochise County Jail on charges of aggravated luring a minor for sexual exploitation, luring a minor for sexual exploitation, and attempted sexual conduct and with a minor.

Joshua Davilla of Chandler was arrested after a pursuit that began in Sierra Vista and ended in Tombstone on Wednesday. He was booked into the Cochise County Jail on charges of aggravated luring a minor for sexual exploitation, luring a minor for sexual exploitation, attempted sexual conduct with a minor, felony flight from law enforcement, and endangerment.

Aaron Michael Garner of Sierra Vista was arrested on Friday, Feb. 15 and booked into Cochise County Jail on charges of luring a minor for sexual exploitation.

Toefilo Lopez Jr. of Sierra Vista was arrested on Friday and booked into the Cochise County Jail on charges of luring a minor for sexual exploitation and attempted sexual conduct with a minor.

Alexandru Dumtrascu of Sierra Vista was arrested on Saturday, Feb. 16 and booked into Cochise County Jail on charges of aggravated luring a minor for sexual exploitation, luring a minor for sexual exploitation, and attempted sexual conduct with a minor.

Special agents from Homeland Security Investigations arrested three other people as part of this operation. These individuals were processed and transported to the U.S. District Court in Tucson.

The operation was conducted by the local Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, comprised of Homeland Security Investigations, the FBI, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command, Arizona Department of Public Safety, Cochise County Sheriff’s Office, and the Sierra Vista Police Department. Deputies from the Tombstone Marshal’s Office and officers with the Bisbee Police Department also assisted in the arrest of a subject. The ICAC continuously provides investigative leads, specific training, and resources to member agencies to assist in child crime investigations.

This investigation is ongoing and anyone with information regarding crimes involving the sexual exploitation of minors can contact SVPD Detective Thomas Ransford at (520) 452-7500.

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