CRIME

15-year-old girl and friend help catch registered sex offender

Jan 8, 2021, 1:38 PM | Updated: 4:54 pm
Police car sirens....
(PHOTO: Courtesy of Getty Images)
(PHOTO: Courtesy of Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY — A registered sex offender has been arrested in Cache County thanks to the help of a teenage girl he tried to entice. 

Registered sex offender charged… again

Tanner Paul Clark of South Weber, 27, was charged Thursday in 1st District Court with seven counts of enticing a minor by text or internet, which is a third-degree felony.

Cops say Clark friended a 15-year-old girl on Snapchat in December and allegedly told her that he was also 15 and lived in Brigham City. Clark began asking the girl for nude photos about two weeks later, but she refused, according to a police booking affidavit. 

Clark allegedly messaged the girl on Wednesday asking if they could meet and drive around together. Cops say the girl agreed, but ultimately decided to bring a friend with her.

The report indicates the two agreed to meet in a church parking lot that is described only as being somewhere in Cache County. According to the affidavit, the two parked on opposite ends of the lot and “she stated that he messaged her and tried to get her to come and get in his car. She stated that she told him no and to come over to her.”

The affidavit states that Clark later took off in his vehicle after he saw that the girl had brought a friend with her. The two followed Clark and took photos and videos of his license plate, while he was “trying to hide his face with his hand.”

After being contacted, police were able to use the photo of the license plate and identified Clark as their suspect. His probation officer later took him into custody.

Criminal history

According to charging documents, Clark was charged with 14 felonies in Weber County back in 2018 for having sex with one 17-year-old girl and sending explicit pictures to another. He pleaded guilty to two counts of attempted sexual exploitation of a minor, two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a 17-year-old, and two counts of dealing in harmful materials to a minor.

According to the affidavit, as part of his conditions for being on the Utah Sex Offender Registry, he was not allowed to own a smartphone or have a Snapchat account.

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15-year-old girl and friend help catch registered sex offender