Oneonta man arrested for soliciting child

A 25-year-old Oneonta man was arrested for soliciting a child by computer on Friday. The Oneonta Police Department gained knowledge on the situation after receiving a call about a young girl walking near the Ala 75 bridge, north of Oneonta.

Oneonta police officer Jimmy Baldwin arrived on the scene, and the girl said she had walked from the Snead BP to that area. At first, she claimed to be older than she actually was, but finally admitted to being 12 years old. Officer Baldwin transported her back to the Oneonta Police Department where she allegedly told him she was from Limestone County and was in Blount County to meet a 25-year-old man with whom she had previous had sexual relations with.

On Friday, officers Jonathan Ledbetter and Mike Harris went to the 25-year-old man’s residence and arrested him. When officers approached the male he was on the same website that he had met the 12-year-old on. The man first claimed to not know the female, but Investigator Shane Osborne said the man had the girl’s phone number in his pocket and his computer wallpaper was a picture of her.

Allegedly, the man said the female had at first told him she was 20 years old, but later on admitted that she was 12, to which he replied that he did not care.

The suspect is being held in the Blount County jail on a $100,000 bond. The 12-year-old was released to her family in Limestone County.