Alabama dad pretended to be child in response to texts and lured alleged sex predator to arrest

Published 1:53 pm Tuesday, January 31, 2023

An Alabama father who realized a stranger was texting his child posted as the child and lured a suspected child predator to his home were sheriff’s deputies were waiting to arrest him.

Marshall County Sheriff Phil Sims said his office received a call from man who discovered inappropriate text messages were being sent to his child.

The father then posed as his child and the person texting agreed to come to a residence near Arab for an intimate meeting.

Deputies were waiting nearby when the suspect arrived. They arrested Tanner Allen, 22, of Athens, Alabama, and charged him with electronic solicitation of a child. He was booked into the Marshall County Jail on Saturday and held on a $100,000 property bond, the sheriff said.

“The dangers of social media and phone apps are ever present in today’s society,” Sims said. “I encourage parents to check your teenager’s phones for any kind of suspicious activity. Also, install parental controls on their phones to block illicit communications and activity from sexual predators.”

He said the case is still under investigation and more charges could be forthcoming.