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To Catch a Predator III - Recap

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There has rarely been a reality show this raw and disturbingly real. There are no retakes and no producers manipulating the outcome. These are genuine pillars of the community (among others who aren’t such pillars) who are online and stalking kids for sex. There are men nearing 80 years old with a long list of sexual predator offenses and there are men in their 20’s. Most seem to be in their 40’s and 50’s, with attitude and frightening fearlessness. All of them show up at this home in middle suburbia hoping for a ‘date’ with a 13 or 14 year old child. Some are looking for a boy, others for a girl, but all of them are looking for something not just illicit, but illegal.
Chris Hansen, Dateline’s perfect man for this mission in his candor and directness, ends up being what these men meet. As he initially interviews them there are obviously no cameras in sight, however, once the camera crew shows themselves, these guys make moves for the door, have their hands up in the air (one threatens the camera person, to which Hansen firmly tells him how much he doesn’t ‘want to do [that]) and once Hansen tells them they are free to leave, they all do. This time though, the police are right outside and each one is carted away. It’s a clean sweep of the garbage on the streets, after the garbage makes excuses for being there.
One of these guys insisted he was there at 11:00 p.m. at night to see some guy as referred by some other guy over some vague phone call, about a job in construction. When Chris Hansen reads the emails intercepted, which clearly indicate this man’s reason for being there (to meet with a youngster for photos and sex), the man just denies it. Someone else must have used an old email account of his and oh, yeah, he ‘thinks he remembers’ being a photographer many years ago. Better yet? He says he was an actor in Arnold Schwarzenegger’s ‘Kindergarten Cop’.
Amazingly, a lot of these whackos talked openly about it before they saw the cameras; then clammed right up when police met them outside. They all seemed to know their rights and called for their lawyers, like they’ve done this before. So really, why are they are doing it again? I mean, why CAN they do it again? And again? Is there some magic number of children that need to be abused, violated and damaged deeply, sometimes for a lifetime, before these guys are put away, in a mental health facility or prison, for the same amount of time? A lifetime.


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