published Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Georgia teen accused in child sex sting faked death

PANAMA CITY, Fla. — Prosecutors in Panama City are seeking to revoke the bond of a Georgia teen who officials believe faked his death and traveled to Denver.

According to court records in Bay County, on April 22, a fisherman found a pile of clothes and a suicide note along the bank of the Little River in Brooks County, Ga., which is on the Florida-Georgia line. Investigators say Nathan Wilkins, 19, turned up in Aurora, Colo., three days later.

The News Herald of Panama City reported that Wilkins was due in court on Monday from charges stemming from his arrest on sex charges in June. It is unclear whether Wilkins has returned from Colorado.

Assistant State Attorney Christa Diviney said that Wilkins violated his bond by leaving his home without notifying the court or his bondsman.

Wilkins was charged with traveling to meet a minor for sex, computer pornography and child exploitation. He was arrested during Operation Riptide, a multi-agency sting operation that officials say was designed to lure men interested in having sex with children.

Wilkins responded to a Craigslist ad from a man looking for someone to help his 11-year-old daughter lose her virginity, according to court records. The person Wilkins exchanged emails with asked him to bring a slushy for the child.

Police said Wilkins arrived at the predetermined location with a slushy. But the father and child weren’t waiting for him. Instead, officers representing the North Florida Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force were waiting. Wilkins and 11 other men were arrested as part of the sex sting.

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