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Hawaii News

School’s employee allegedly lured girl

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A 45-year-old elementary school worker and museum security guard was indicted Thursday on a charge of first-degree electronic enticement of a child.

It is the second Hawaii case in which the victim was a child — not an undercover agent — according to the state attorney general’s office.

Douglas John Lopez of Ahuimanu allegedly contacted a 13-year-old girl using an electronic device and arranged to meet her for sex, police said.

Officers with the police Narcotics/Vice Division and the Hawaii Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force arrested Lopez May 19 at the Kaneohe Zippy’s.

Police released Lopez a short time later, but no charges had been filed until Thursday.

The Ahuimanu man works one hour two days a week as a part-time school lunch supervisor at Benjamin Parker Elementary School, and also as a Bishop Museum security guard.

Bishop Museum suspended him after his arrest.

Josh Wisch, special assistant to the attorney general, said Lopez’s initial court appearance would depend on when he is arrested. He said Lopez had aliases: Uncle Doug and Dogiefresh.

Lopez was not in police custody as of yesterday afternoon.

According to a Hawaii News Now report, investigators said they became aware of the plan to meet her in person for sex because the girl sought help from her mother, who was in a relationship with Lopez at the time.

Lopez allegedly sent explicit cellphone text messages to the girl and arranged to meet her in person for sex, the report said.

His bail amount was set at $40,000, the attorney general’s office said.

Lopez’s Hawaii criminal record lists two petty misdemeanors for driving under the influence.

The first Hawaii case involving an actual child victim occurred on Maui in 2006, a spokesman for the attorney general’s office said.

Prior to the two cases, all other electronic enticement cases have involved a sting operation in which an undercover police officer posing online as an underage girl agrees to meet the suspect. Waiting law enforcement officers then arrest the suspect when he shows up at the designated meeting place.

One critic of the practice, former state Rep. Joe Bertram, had argued in 2009 that a friend caught in an Internet predator sting should not be sent to prison for what he called "imaginary crime."

He said he was the only representative to vote in 2008 against changing the law to make a 10-year prison term without probation mandatory for someone convicted of first-degree electronic enticement of a child.

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