SNOHOMISH CO., Wash. — A firefighter and a real estate broker are among six men arrested by the Washington State Patrol in a child sex sting in Snohomish County.
Prosecutors say the men all communicated with an undercover detective and showed up at meeting places.
"Basically they wanted to rape children ranging from 8 to 13 years old," said WSP Sgt. Carlos Rodriguez.
Kevin Dale Best, a firefighter with Central Kitsap Fire and Rescue, was the first to appear by video from the Snohomish County courthouse on Monday.
His employer placed him on leave after learning of his arrest.
"He uses his position as a firefighter to further entice his victims, indicating he would take them to the firehouse and show them around," said Robert Grant, Snohomish County deputy prosecuting attorney.
"A lot of these people are not on the radar," Rodriguez said. "These are people who are out in society that everybody thinks is just normal."
Stephen Wayne Canter is an Everett real estate broker.
According to an affidavit of probable cause, he arrived in a Range Rover for sex with two girls.
On Monday, his attorney argued that Canter's time in jail will be tough on his family and on clients trying to close sales.
Another defendant, Edward Cordial Peros, was described in court as a Boeing worker and a homeowner.
Family members showed up in court, and left without commenting.
Detectives say Russell Paul Harris showed up expecting sex with two girls, eight and ten.
The youngest man caught in the sting was 20-year-old Brandon Michael Booth.
The oldest, 61-year-old Randy C. Krantz, appeared in court last week.
In the last two years, Washington State Patrol stings caught 27 people, despite media coverage that ought to warn predators.
"They're still showing up. I mean, it's crazy," Rodriguez said.
Detectives say the sting led to evidence of at least three children who have been victimized.
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Cox Media Group