“SceneKids” easily accessible for predators

Last updated: March 14. 2014 11:27AM - 2417 Views
By - ctamborski@civitasmedia.com

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A Ripley man has been charged with three felonies for sexually extorting a 13-year-old Colorado female over the Internet through social media video messaging.

Gregory Scott Kasarcik, 24, is facing two counts of Sexual Exploitation of a Child and one count of Internet Sexual Exploitation of a Child for his alleged actions and statements to the Arvada, Colo., teen — in the suburbs of Denver — which he allegedly made from a residence in Brown County.

According to the affidavit report, Kasarcik threatened to break the victim’s computer if she did not perform sexual acts while video chatting. The 13-year-old informed her older sister of what Kasarcik had said and, because their guardian was not home at the time, told an adult neighbor. That neighbor then called their local Arvada Colorado Police Department, which began the investigation into Kasarcik.

SceneKids is a social media website for teenagers, similar to Facebook, but with a much simpler interface. It enables users to “Skype call” other users through their profiles, making video chatting a popular feature of SceneKids. For teens who do not have smartphones or use of iPhone’s FaceTime, SceneKids offers a video function.

Kasarcik is known for using the screen name “ericfringe2,” although investigators say the past he had used the names “ericfringe” and “ericfringe1”. He also uses a profile picture that is not of himself, but of a shirtless white male with long hair.

According to the arrest affidavit, Kasarcik pretended to need the victim’s advice on camera help and tried to persuade her to move from talking on SceneKids to live video chatting on Skype. Kasarcik then sent the victim texts (through Skype) demanding she remove her clothes and after she refused, the affidavit reads, Kasarcik said he had her IP address and would blow up the computer.

The same affidavit goes on to read that the victim eventually did take off her clothes because she was scared. Kasarcik allegedly ordered the victim to perform sex acts on video chat, which she initially refused, but then performed after Kasarcik threatened to post nude photographs of her on the Internet.

After a short while, the victim turned off the camera and told her sister. After seeking legal permission to access Kasarcik’s SceneKids and Skype Communications information, they found further evidence of disturbing behavior.

At the time of the incident, Kasarcik’s profile claimed he was 15 years old and used the photograph of an individual who was not himself. It was also evident that he had communicated with other users in the past and in a fashion similar to the Colorado victim.

On his SceneKids profile, still searchable as of Thursday, Kasarcik’s profile states he is a 17-year-old male in the United States and provides his phone number in the following profile tagline: “if you think im cute and want to chat text me 937******* They be like awh he got the velcros.”

His last posted status, dated three months ago, was “anyone want to skype message me :)”. He was last on the site Jan. 26.

Teenage female profile users who left messages for Kasarcik — or who were listed as one of his “friends” — were from all over the world, including California, Florida, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, the United Kingdom, and Ohio, among others. Many users, however, do not name their location in their profiles.

Kasarcik has 402 friends on his SceneKids profile.

According to SceneKids rules and regulations, “The only users that can send you messages and leave you comments are your friends. If you are having issues with a user, simply unfriend them and they will be unable to continue.”

The site also provides blocking features and informative pages about online safety for users.

According to the teen site, Kasarcik joined SceneKids eight months ago.

A search-by-town function on the website shows there are less than 15 SceneKids users in Brown County, although that number could be higher since many users just list their town’s name. For example, a SceneKids user who lists their hometown as Aberdeen could really mean Aberdeen, Wash.., or a user who lists their hometown as Fayetteville could really live in Fayetteville, N.C.

A warrant was issued for Kasarcik’s arrest Feb. 5. The Brown County Sheriff’s Office arrested Kasarcik and on March 4 he was booked by the Jefferson County Colorado Sheriff’s Department.

As of Thursday, March 13, Kasarcik was still sitting in a Colorado jail.

Kasarcik is being held on a $50,000 cash, surety bond at Jefferson County Detention Center in Colorado. A preliminary hearing is set for April 11.

This also isn’t Kasarcik’s first run-in with the law. In 2012, he was indicted by a Mason County judge for flagrant non-support, with costs totaling $5,142.

Kasarcik is a 2008 graduate of Ripley-Union-Lewis-Huntington High School.

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