Detectives with the Boone County Sheriff??s Department Cyber Crimes Task Force and Detectives with the ProActive Unit arrested a 29 year old Jefferson City man on a variety of sexual offenses regarding the solicitation of a minor child Thursday morning.
Jeremy Ryan Bappert, 29, was arrested for the suspicion of the distribution of child pornography, the possession of child pornography, attempted statutory rape, attempted statutory sodomy, and a felony offense of patronizing prostitution.
According to a press release, a tip from a local resident prompted the Cyber Crimes Task Force investigation during the the first week of July, 2013. Investigators discovered Bappert had reportedly been offering money to have sexual contact with a young child. Task Force investigators began an undercover investigation posing as a mother of a child who would allow such contact with her for money. During the next few weeks Bappert allegedly tried to negotiate with the child??s mother regarding payment for the service. The 29-year-old is also alleged to have sent the child??s mother child pornography depicting a 9 year old girl in an attempt to gain the mother??s trust.
Early Thursday morning, arrangements were made for Bappert to meet the child??s decoy mother at a specific Columbia location where he would give the woman the agreed upon payment. When he arrived at the meeting site, he was arrested byundercover detectives and a cellular telephone was seized. This cell phone is alleged to have over 20 photographs of child pornography on the device, with believed to be as young as toddlers.
Bappert is currently in the Boone County Jail awaiting the filing of formal charges by the Boone County Prosecuting Attorney??s Office. A bond has not yet been set.