Thursday, April 18, 2024

Arrests made in child-sex sting in Kalispell, Frenchtown

| August 24, 2014 7:48 PM

KALISPELL (AP) — A Frenchtown man has been charged with felony attempted child prostitution and six others in the Kalispell area have been arrested in a child sex sting.

More arrests are pending from the sting that involved an undercover detective offering girls ages 10 to 15 for sex in exchange for money, authorities said.

Curtis Edward Foster, 41, appeared in Missoula County Justice Court on Friday after police say he tried to set up a sexual encounter with a 13-year-old girl in Missoula.

The Flathead County Attorney’s Office says the six other men in the Kalispell area will be charged with felony sexual abuse of children. A conviction on that charge carries a maximum penalty of 100 years in prison and a fine of $50,000. The Associated Press is not naming the men because they haven’t been charged yet.

The Montana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and other agencies took part in the four-day operation that ended Thursday.

Foster contacted an undercover detective and exchanged calls and text messages about paying money for sex with an adolescent female, court records say. Foster arranged to meet a 10-year-old girl or 15-year-old girl, but stated he didn’t know which one because he would have to see them first, police said.

But when Foster found out they were in a different county, he asked, police said, if there was an adolescent female available in Missoula. The undercover detective told him there was a 13-year-old available, and Foster set up a time to meet at a motel, court records say.

A detective posing as the girl’s mother gave Foster the key to another room, but when he opened the door nearby officers identified themselves. Foster pulled away and ran into a parking lot, where he struggled before being taken into custody, police said.

He was listed Sunday as being held in the Missoula County Detention Center with a bail of $100,000. If released, he’s barred from using the Internet, email or social media. He also must wear a monitoring device and is not allowed to have contact with anyone younger than 18.

His next court appearance is set for Sept. 4.