Attorney General Linda Kelly announced, Friday, February 10, 2012, the filing of a series of felony charges against a Butler County man accused of using Facebook to operate an elaborate and disturbing false identity scheme that was used to solicit young girls for explicit photos or meetings for sex.
The defendant was identified as 53-year-old William R. Ainsworth of 110 Raupp Lane, Mars, PA in Butler County. The investigation by the Attorney General’s Child Predator Unit began in September 2011, after agents received information that Ainsworth had traveled to the home of a 14-year-old girl in Butler County in order to engage in various sex acts.
“We quickly discovered that there was much more to this case than the sexual solicitation of one girl,” Kelly said. “What we found was an intricate web of false Facebook identities that were used to establish online relationships with vulnerable girls, who were then manipulated into sending nude photos to Ainsworth.”
Ainsworth is accused of fabricating the Facebook personas of two young men, “Bill Cano” and “Anthony ‘Rip’ Navari,” who were both supposedly living in Florida as surfers after dropping out of high school and running away from their families. It is believed that Ainsworth copied numerous photos of young men and surfers from other social networking sites in order to support these fake Facebook profiles.
Initially, Ainsworth is accused of using the “Bill Cano” profile to identify vulnerable girls. In some cases, Ainsworth’s victims believed that “Bill” had attended their school before running away, while in other cases the victims responded to his online invitations because of multiple overlapping friends.
Kelly said that Ainsworth allegedly used Bill to “groom” potential victims by asking about their interests, complimenting them about their physical appearance and discussing problems with school or family members in order to establish an emotional relationship. “Bill” would then convince the victims to send him nude or sexually explicit photos. After establishing connections with many young people as “Bill Cano,” Ainsworth enhanced the emotional manipulation of this scheme by orchestrating Cano’s death.
Using the persona of Anthony or “Rip” Navari, supposedly a step-brother or fellow surfer/friend of Bill Cano, Ainsworth concocted a story that Cano had been attacked by a group of people, was hospitalized in a coma, and eventually died as the result of his injuries.
Using yet another fictitious character, known as “Glenn Keefer,” who was supposedly an adult from the Pittsburgh area and identified himself online as a “Sugardaddy looking for Sugarbabies,” Ainsworth, posing as “Rip,” solicited potential victims to meet with Keefer for anything from stripping to sex. Supposedly, “Glenn” would send money to “Rip” if the girls would meet him, either to help Rip with his living expenses or to help the girls run away to Florida to be with Rip.
Ainsworth is charged in connection with alleged indecent contact involving seven different victims, ranging in age from 13 to 15. In five of the cases, Ainsworth requested and received nude photos of the girls and in two of the cases he allegedly met with the victims for the purpose of committing sex acts. Kelly noted that some of the intended victims were as young as 12 when they were initially contacted.
Ainsworth is charged with 68 felony counts including involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, criminal attempted unlawful contact with a minor, criminal solicitation to commit unlawful contact with a minor, sexual abuse of children, possession of child pornography, and criminal use of a communications facility.
Ainsworth is currently awaiting trial in Butler County on 13 other felony counts related to his initial arrest in September 2011.
Suspected Internet predators can be reported to the Attorney General’s Office by using the “Report a Predator” link, located on the front page of the Attorney General’s website, at www.attorneygeneral.gov, or by calling the Child Predator Hotline at (800) 385-1044.
Source: Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General
Follow Yvonne P. Mazzulo on Facebook, Twitter and Myspace! To contact Y.P. Mazzulo, email email@example.com. To receive continuous updates on South Central Headlines as articles are published, click Subscribe.
*Free human trafficking victim, Sara Kruzan! www.freesarakruzan.org.*
©2012 Yvonne P. Mazzulo, All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced without prior permissions from the author or Clarity Digital Group LLC d/b/a modenook.com.