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The Eclectic Pen - Predator

By: Scott W. (Rev)   + 36 more  
Date Submitted: 1/2/2008
Genre: Literature & Fiction » Genre Fiction
Words: 1,793

  There are certain guidelines that must be followed in order to avoid being caught.

Boardskillz26: hey again!
XcelticfanX: Was afraid you wouldn’t be on tonight.
Boardskillz26: well i am:
Boardskillz26: :-P
XcelticfanX: So you are. How are you?
Boardskillz26: much better now ;)

The internet, when used properly, is completely anonymous and flexible. Utilize this tool to its fullest capabilities.

There are dozens of social networking groups online that allow members to create personal profiles without any proof of identity. Some of these require personal email and physical addresses for user records, both of which can be easily faked or bypassed.

Nearly all of these sites are free, boast active members in the millions, and are equipped with their own instant messaging services.

These sites are where people go to meet people.

XcelticfanX: My friends call me Bri.
XcelticfanX: We are friends, right?
Boardskillz26: of course. its a silly name is all
XcelticfanX: Well, I can be a silly guy.
XcelticfanX: :o)
Boardskillz26: lol
XcelticfanX: You don’t have a nickname?
Boardskillz26: none that i like.
XcelticfanX: No one calls you mick or mike?
Boardskillz26: no just mickey
XcelticfanX: okay, then I won’t either.
Boardskillz26: cool

Never use your real name. Pick a nondescript screen name that does not allude to the desired goal of sexual encounters. Try something relating to a hobby, or an interest that the potential victim might find intriguing.

The alias you give when using the screen name should not have any connection to your true identity. Do not take on the name of a coworker, friend, distant relative, or childhood pet. Even a casual connection to your false online persona can be potentially disastrous. However, the cover name must become a familiar extension of you; responses to your assumed name must come naturally and without hesitance. Your target will not feel confident in your online relationship if he feels you are not confident in your communications.

XcelticfanX: u busy?
Boardskillz26: nah
XcelticfanX: saw you were on, didn’t want to bug you
Boardskillz26: you never bug me!!!
XcelticfanX: cool
Boardskillz26: always enjoy talking to you
XcelticfanX: me too

Do not rush a potential victim. When first contact is made with a target, be friendly and outgoing, but keep the conversation casual and relaxed. Do not request future online meetings or ask for personal information. Stay interesting and engaging; build your target’s curiosity through subtle manipulation. Your goal is to have him invite you to a ‘private chat’, or ask to be added to his ‘friend’s list’. Once this has happened, consider him hooked.

XcelticfanX: You enjoy our chat last night?
Boardskillz26: yeah. it was
XcelticfanX: ???
Boardskillz26: weird
XcelticfanX: bad weird?
Boardskillz26: no!!! it was good, just never felt like that
XcelticfanX: like what?
XcelticfanX: exciting?
Boardskillz26: lol
Boardskillz26: yeah it did
XcelticfanX: but you enjoyed it?
Boardskillz26: yeah
XcelticfanX: cool
Boardskillz26: never done things like we talked about
XcelticfanX: never?
Boardskillz26: no!!!!
XcelticfanX: you don’t want to?
XcelticfanX: ??????
Boardskillz26: i think id like it
XcelticfanX: really?
Boardskillz26: yeah
XcelticfanX: I think you would too.

The goal is to arrange a meeting in person. This must be handled delicately.

Ideally, the victim should initiate the idea. There will be no doubt or suspicion if he is the one who brings up the possibility of an encounter. Once he does so, the suggestion should be initially glanced over, with attention barely paid to it. Allow him to bring it up again. When he does, gently resist the notion. Imply that your reluctance is based only on fear and paranoia, not lack of desire. Allow him to make his argument for the meeting, forcing him to convince you that it will be perfectly safe.

Your willingness to meet, yet reluctance to follow through, will sufficiently bait the victim. When the location you have chosen is decided upon, he will believe that the choice was made by him.

Boardskillz26: i never had a teddy bear
XcelticfanX: Never? Why?
Boardskillz26: no. dad says dolls and stuff are for babys
XcelticfanX: that’s stupid. Do you think I’m a baby?
Boardskillz26: no!!! of course not!!!
XcelticfanX: Well I have one.
Boardskillz26: really?
XcelticfanX: Really. Short brown teddy with a big floppy hat.
Boardskillz26: wow. snds cool.
XcelticfanX: He is. Maybe I could bring him along.
XcelticfanX: Give him a new home with a cool kid I know…
XcelticfanX: ;)
Boardskillz26: you meen it?
XcelticfanX: of course. Would I lie to you?
Boardskillz26: you are so cool
XcelticfanX: :">

Gifts are a wonderful way to relieve any doubts your target might have. Bringing a gift will lend a more platonic atmosphere to the meeting, and will give the target an increased sense of security.

Boardskillz26: i double chcked. He wont be home till teusady
XcelticfanX: Your dad usually leave you home alone so long?
Boardskillz26: why not. I can take care of myself.
XcelticfanX: of course you can. I can tell that about you.
XcelticfanX: So where do you want to meet?
Boardskillz26: not sure.
XcelticfanX: it doesn’t have to be at your place or mine.
XcelticfanX: We can meet somewhere else
Boardskillz26: no, thats okay. would your house be okay
Boardskillz26: or should you come here?
XcelticfanX: It depends. Where do you thing you’ll feel safer?

Choosing the proper meeting place is crucial. The location should be neutral to both parties, so no connection can be made. Meetings should always take place out of town, preferably out of state, and no two rendezvous should take place in the same area twice. Strike like lightning.

Hotels are convenient, but hold many hidden dangers; nosy clerks, attentive visitors, hidden security cameras in lobbies and elevators, and the unavoidable possibility of a paper trail should all be major concerns. These are obstacles that can be bypassed and overcome, but should be taken very seriously. I have used hotels twice so far. Both times involved numerous close calls that could be considered high risk, but such meetings are necessary to avoid any visible pattern in locations.

Temporarily deserted houses are more common than one might think, and are easily accessible for short periods of time. With a little research and minor detective work, such homes can become secure locations.

Seasonal dwellings, such as summer cottages, are often secluded or a safe distance from the prying eyes of neighbors. Unoccupied houses up for sale for extended periods of time can be easily accessed in between infrequent visits by potential buyers. Realtors will give business hours for viewings over the phone, and neighbors will have become desensitized to the site of strangers entering the house at unusual hours.

The house I chose for this meeting has been on the market for nearly six months. It is in a rural area with little street traffic and distant neighboring houses, one of which is also up for sale. It is unfurnished, and I run the risk of alerting him to the inherent dangers if I don’t initiate contact quickly upon his arrival.

XcelticfanX: Tomorrow is the big day. You excited?
Boardskillz26: yeah. cant believe im doing this.
XcelticfanX: Scared?
Boardskillz26: no.
Boardskillz26: cant wait to meet u
XcelticfanX: /:)
Boardskillz26: really! Not scared. Looking forward to it.
XcelticfanX: Me too. :D
Boardskillz26: never done this before
XcelticfanX: I know, don’t woory
Boardskillz26: im not.

The doorbell rings twice. The soft rattle of the front door handle being tested echoes through the empty house. It is found to be unlocked, and swings open slowly.

“Hello?” His voice is weak and wavers, tinged with fear and doubt.

I can hear his steps as he enters hesitantly. He is most likely nervous and apprehensive, while at the same time irresistibly excited. No one answers his call. The silence must worry him, but he still comes inside. He has undoubtedly noticed the stark walls and bare floors before he has gone very far, but by the time his fifth step has sounded, it is too late to turn back.

I emerge from my hiding spot, right next to the entrance, in the hallway closet now behind him. I step out quickly in a skilled, fluid motion. My stealthy and calm execution belies my experience. I reach out and swing the door shut as I step up to him. It is not my rapid approach that startles him, but the sudden noise of the door slamming shut. He turns to find me standing between him and the exit.

As I see him in person for the first time, I notice the differences from how he described himself online. He is slightly older, though not by much, and considerably shorter, a fact he probably hoped the drastic height difference would obscure. The teddy bear he had promised to bring, which he drops upon seeing me, does not have a floppy hat.

Never use the same weapon twice. This is only the third time I have used a gun. It is an old service revolver acquired months ago at an out of state gun show, undocumented and untraceable. A quart-sized plastic water bottle duct-taped to the barrel will act as a reasonable sound suppressor, suitable enough to prevent a passing car from hearing the gunshot, but effectively limits the use of the weapon to one shot. I am within arm’s length, and my hand is steady as I reach up, press the bottom of the plastic bottle to his forehead, and pull the trigger. One shot proves more than enough.

I return the gun with its makeshift silencer to my backpack, along with the teddy bear, which is thankfully free of blood spatter. Both items will be discarded three counties away, along with the clothing and rubber gloves I am wearing. All that will be left behind is the pedophile’s corpse and a crumpled photocopy of some of the online conversations he had with ‘Mickey’, which I leave in his jacket pocket to be found during the investigation. It would be criminal to allow him to escape judgment via his untimely death. They will find the copies, check his computer, and his secret life will be exposed.

He is the eighth online predator that I have lured and dispatched, the eighth one I have killed and exposed since they did the same to my son five years ago, three weeks before his thirteenth birthday.

I exit through the back door, cross the backyard to the opposite street, and walk the twelve blocks to where my car is parked and waiting. I will be back home in time for work on Monday, my camping trip alibi rehearsed and well documented in case mistakes have been made.

Always have an exit strategy, as well as an alibi. It is very important to have backups for both in case either fails. Getting caught is not an option. There are too many predators still walking around, searching for victims. Innocent victims, just like my son.

Most importantly: Never forgive. Never forget.

The Eclectic Pen » All Stories by Scott W. (Rev)

Member Comments

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Comments 1 to 5 of 5
Sarah W. (BlueShoes7) - 1/2/2008 7:02 PM ET
Very engrossing, it wasn't long before I was hooked, although for a second I thought it was more of a warning of the dangers of instant messaging instead of a story. Still liked it though.
IONE L. (zaneygraylady) - 1/2/2008 10:52 PM ET
very good you should develop this into a novel
Claudia (BrokenWing) - 1/10/2008 6:40 PM ET
Quite effective and downright chilling
Kenjii H. (Daalmonette) - , - 1/15/2008 1:36 PM ET
This was good. I hardly ever can read (I usually make printouts) stories online, but I liked this. Is there a pt.2?
Marta J. (booksnob) - 1/15/2008 2:59 PM ET
Damn this is good!-- "To Catch a Predator" goes vigilante. Very taut. I agree with Ione; this could be expanded into a novel.
Comments 1 to 5 of 5