Local News

Businessman Charged With Internet Sex Crime

Posted August 11, 2006

— A local businessman has been arrested and charged with using the Internet to set up a sexual rendezvous with an underage girl, authorities said.

Matthew Magee, 42, is the third man arrested this week across the region on a charge of solicitation of a child by computer to commit an unlawful sex act.

Authorities said Magee had explicit conversations in an online chat room with a Person County deputy posing as a 14-year-old girl. He used a Web camera to expose himself, and he set up a meeting in the parking lot of Person High School, where he was arrested, authorities said.

"We didn't target him. He targeted us," Person County Sheriff Dennis Oakley said.

Computer forensics technicians have searched Magee's Morrisville computer business, Affordable Portables, and Oakley said investigators are trying to determine if other youths were targeted online previously.

"We're still in the stages of digging into what he is in fact doing. There could be other victims," he said.

On Wednesday, 46-year-old David Jones, a teacher and coach at Phillips Middle School in Chapel Hill, and 31-year-old Joshua Shawn Pounds of Fayetteville were arrested in similar incidents.

King Prather, a neighbor of Magee's, said he isn't surprised by the rash of arrests.

"You read about it too much. You always wonder if it's in your neighborhood, if it's right next door. You see it so often, you have to believe the odds are that sometimes it's going to get pretty close to home," Prather said.

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