Man arrested by task force taught kids |

Man arrested by task force taught kids

Patrick Parkinson, Of the Record staff

A Salt Lake man employed at the Summit County Health Department as an educator in the schools was arrested in an Internet sex sting and had his work computer seized by investigators, authorities said.

"[The suspect] is a health educator," said Katie Mullaly, a spokeswoman for the Summit County Health Department. "He goes out to the schools for outreach programs."

The 26-year-old was arrested in Salt Lake Nov. 15 by members of the state Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, said Paul Murphy, a spokesman for the Office of the Attorney General.

"They’re probably the best task force in the country," Murphy said about a team of investigators who hunt suspected on-line sexual predators.

The man is incarcerated in Salt Lake City waiting for state prosecutors to determine whether formal charges will be filed, Summit County Attorney David Brickey said.

"Friday the Summit County Attorney’s Office and Health Department worked with the attorney general’s office to effect a seizure of [the man’s] computer," Brickey said in a telephone interview Tuesday. "He was suspended from his employment with pay on Monday."

Officials in Summit County learned of the man’s arrest on Friday, Brickey explained.

"We’re just doing what we need to, to protect Summit County and its citizens," he said. "If he was behaving in a way that was inappropriate, we’ll address it with regard to his employment."

The computer that investigators seized is property of Summit County, Brickey said.

"You’re always concerned that a county employee’s acts would reflect poorly on the county as a whole and clearly [his] conduct is something we’re still investigating," Brickey said.

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