2,000th arrest made by child predator units
Online, convicted sex offenders tracked since 2003
Last week’s arrest of Kirk Brandon Muller marked the 2,000th arrest by the Cyber Crimes and Fugitive units created by Attorney General Greg Abbott in 2003, Abbott said Thursday.
Muller, convicted in 1993 for indecency with four children, was arrested for being in contact with a young girl, a violation of his parole, Abbott said.
The Fugitive Unit tracks down previously convicted child sex offenders, like Muller, who have violated their parole. Investigators in the Cyber Crimes Unit comb through Internet social sites posing as young children and looking for child sexual predators.
These kind of preventive measures, Abbott said, are important because of the everchanging technologies that children use and that child predators use against them.
Based on pictures and information on sites such as MySpace and Facebook, potential predators can gauge the vulnerability of a child, Abbott said.
“It requires our officers to constantly stay on their toes with this new technology,” Abbott said. “It provides us with some tools to be able to track down these predators.”
Since 2003, Austin ranks third statewide for the number of arrests at about 300, with Houston and Dallas coming in first and second, he said.
Sexual predators are more likely to repeat their offenses than any other criminal population, Abbott said, but “they are being watched. They are being tracked. We are following what they’re doing,” he said. “We want to get them off the street before they get to hurt the victim.”