Parents' Facebook sting helps catch Wash. sex offender

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by JOHN LANGELER / KING 5 News

WHAS11.com

Posted on September 2, 2012 at 10:28 PM

Updated Sunday, Sep 2 at 10:32 PM

SEDRO-WOOLEY, Wash. - A 19-year-old registered sex offender has been arrested in Skagit County after the mother of the girl he was dating set up a Facebook sting.

Jesper and Julie Myrfors say they had been concerned about their daughter’s boyfriend.

"We just thought she was getting into a dangerous situation,” said Jesper.

"When I met him, he was totally charming, really likable,” said Julie.

He is 19-year-old William Elms, also known as Liam. Liam was dating the Myrfors' 17-year-old-daughter.

Then, Julie and Jesper learned Liam was a registered sex offender.

"When there's a question, follow it.  Find the answer for your kids,” said Julie.

With some help, the parents set up a sting.

"Why not make a Facebook and create a girl?" said Julie.

"When we did this, we had rules.  We were not trying to entrap him.  We were setting him up a situation where, if he was a bad guy, he could act on it,” said Jesper.

And he did. He began sending explicit messages and pictures.

"My daughter didn't know we had done this. I invited her on to begin watching live.  She started watching conversations on our fake little person,” said Julie."The hardest part as a parent was watching her heart break."

The relationship was over, but the story wasn't.

"If we were just to say, well, our daughter's off the hook.  We would be bad citizens,” said Jesper.

So they told Sedro-Woolley police.

Elms was arrested at the Snohomish County Jail, where he was serving time for a probation violation. He's now back in the Skagit County Jail, facing charges of Immoral Conduct with a Minor.

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