United States Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez informed Historic City News that 66-year-old St Augustine resident Brian Ray Dunlap has been arrested and charged by a federal criminal complaint with using the internet to attempt to entice a child to engage in sexual activity.
Dunlap faces a minimum mandatory penalty of 10 years, and up to life, in federal prison. He is currently in custody pending a detention hearing.
According to the criminal complaint, on October 6, 2018, a detective with the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, who was posing online as a parent of two children, ages 9 and 12, received an email message from Dunlap, who identified himself as “Brian”.
Over the next three-days, Dunlap had email and text communications with the detective. He described to the detective the exact sexual acts that he wished to perform on the two “children”. Then, on October 9, 2018, Dunlap traveled to an agreed, public location in St Johns County to meet who he thought was the parent. Dunlap sent a photo of himself to the detective so that he could be recognized when they met. When Dunlap arrived, he was arrested.
This case was investigated by the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney D. Rodney Brown.
This is another case brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims.