ELMA, Wash. - A level two registered sex offender was arrested Sunday after he traveled to Elma to meet with an 11-year-old boy, according to the Washington State Patrol.
According to state patrol, Joel R. Alexander, 35, showed up at a men’s restroom at an Elma park to meet with someone he thought was a boy.
This person turned out to be a detective with the Washington State Patrol’s Missing and Exploited Children’s Task Force (MECTF).
According to state patrol, the case started when a mother alerted the Elma Police Department that her 11-year-old son was having inappropriate chat conversations on Facebook with Alexander.
Police then contacted MECTF for assistance.
For a month, MECTF detectives played an undercover role as the boy, and continued the online conversations with the Alexander.
During that time, Alexander sent child pornography and had graphic online conversations with the supposed 11-year-old, officials said. Within a conversation, the two agreed to meet at the park.
When Alexander showed up, he was greeted by detectives and taken into custody.
Alexander was required to register as a sex offender following a 2001 conviction for second-degree child rape, state patrol said.
According to state patrol, Alexander was booked into the Grays Harbor County Jail with no bail, and will face a number of potential charges:
- First-degree attempted rape of a child
- Possession of child sex depictions
- Sending and receiving child sex depictions
- Communication with a minor for immoral purposes
- Failing to register as a sex offender in Snohomish County
Detectives received a search warrant for Alexander's home in Snohomish, and an investigation continues on this incident.