October 28th, 2020

Man caught in child porn sting sentenced


By Herald on October 2, 2020.

Delon Shurtz
Lethbridge Herald
dshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com
A Lethbridge man caught in a cross-border child pornography sting has been sentenced to a mandatory minimum of six months in jail.
Riley Raymond Tripp, 42, was nabbed last summer following an online undercover operation in which U.S. investigator Maureen McClanahan claimed to be an 11-year-old girl on the social media site called Chat Avenue.
Tripp, using the name Friday Guy, began chatting with the investigator in a teen chatroom, and even though he believed she was only 11 years old, invited her to join a separate chatroom where he asked her to send him a picture of her legs and he sent her two pictures of his genitals.
Tripp also called the investigator on her phone and they spoke for nine minutes, during which he said he wanted her to touch “it.”
McClanahan learned Tripp’s IP address and sent it and details of her investigation to police in Alberta who determined Friday Guy was Tripp. Police searched Tripp’s residence on July 27, 2019 and seized a number of electronic devices, including a Chromebook used in the offence. A technician with the Southern Alberta Internet Child Exploitation team found a copy of one of the images Tripp sent to McClanahan.
During an interview with police Tripp admitted he was Friday Guy and chatted with people in the teen chatroom. He also admitted he previously had sexualized chats with people he believed were under the age of 18, and had sent at least three of them pictures of his genitals.
Although charged with several child pornography-related offences, Tripp pleaded guilty last week in Lethbridge provincial court to one count of distributing sexually explicit material to someone under the age of 18, and was sentenced to the six months in jail. Charges of possession of child pornography, accessing child pornography, child luring and publishing child pornography were withdrawn by the Crown.
Defence counsel told court Tripp, who has a three-year-old daughter, is remorseful for his conduct and intended to plead guilty from the beginning. The matter was delayed, however, because of COVID-19.
In addition to his jail sentence, Tripp will be on probation for 12 months following his release, during which he must be assessed and take treatment and counselling as directed. He must also submit a sample of his DNA for the National DNA Databank, and he will be listed under he Sex Offender Information Registration Act for 20 years.
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