April 25, 2007

Miss America, Crime Fighter

Earlier this month, a former Miss America in her 80s got the drop on a thief with her .38-caliber handgun, shooting out one of his tires so that police could arrest him. Venus Ramey, meet Lauren Nelson, the current Miss America and the latest beauty-pageant crimefighter. Nelson teamed with John Walsh to take down some on-line sexual predators:

Miss America can add crime fighter to her resume. Lauren Nelson recently went undercover with police in New York for a sting targeting sexual predators. Officers with Suffolk County's computer crimes unit created an online profile of a 14-year-old girl that included photographs of Nelson as a teenager.

"I got to chat online with the predators and made phone calls, too," Nelson said by phone from Atlantic City, N.J. "The Suffolk County Police Department was there the whole time."

The operation was filmed for a segment of "America's Most Wanted" that will air Saturday on Fox. Police spokesman Tim Motz said the operation was ongoing and declined to comment Tuesday evening.

At least four men were arrested and face charges, said Avery Mann, a spokesman for the show. Another six men agreed to meet Nelson, of Lawton, Okla., he said.

This effort mirrors the series of staged events by NBC's Stone Phillips that has caught dozens of men who prey upon young girls on the Internet. The producers work with local law-enforcement agencies and set up an on-line identity for their bait, having a young woman play the role of a young girl in order to catch the predators. When they arrive, they briefly meet the woman, who gives way to Phillips or Walsh, a camera crew, and a nightmare.

Kudos to Phillips, Walsh, NBC, Fox, and to Lauren Nelson -- who shows that Miss America serves the community.

UPDATE: I'm told the NBC man to thank is Chris Hanson rather than Stone Phillips by CQ commenter GiovanniAPeters.

UPDATE II: Also, credit should go to the group that first implemented the strategy -- Perverted Justice, as CQ commenter sgtted notes.

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Comments (6)

Posted by GiovanniAPeters [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 8:12 AM

Captain, Stone Phillips isn't the NBC guys who catches the predators - that is Chris Hanson who has made a name for himself doing these stories.

Posted by sgtted [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 8:17 AM

The true props go to Perverted Justice, wh has been outing molesters on the web for years before NBC tagged along to film it and make it into a reality show type gig. They are the ones who set up and coax the pervs into the trap.

http://www.perverted-justice.com/

Posted by krm [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 8:44 AM

I have visited the Preverted Justice in the past. The transcripts of their online chats with the perverts makes me think we ought to rethink the idea of capital punishment for child molestors.

Posted by docjim505 [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 10:29 AM

krm wrote (April 25, 2007 08:44 AM):

The transcripts of their online chats with the perverts makes me think we ought to rethink the idea of capital punishment for child molestors.

I'm with you on this one, especially for young children. I'm not interested in why they do it, I'm not interested in trying to rehabilitate them, I'm not interested in understanding that it's a mental disease.

Perverts who lay so much as a finger on a child should hang. Or burn at the stake. Or be trampled by wild horses. Or be staked out on an ant hill. I'm not real choosy on this.

Posted by Big Dan [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 12:07 PM

Well, at least the perps can console themselves that they were caught propositioning an actual woman, instead of the usual play-acting bald 45-year old police detective.

Posted by Duches of Austin [TypeKey Profile Page] | April 25, 2007 4:12 PM

In some states it's merely the proposition that can get you in trouble, but the scary part is that some of them will drive several hours to spend time with a person (boy or girl) whom they know is underaged....

I vote for the anthill and honey....tied down with wet leather straps. They tighten as they dry, muuahahahah. Native Americans sure were geniuses at torture....