Berwyn Man Faces Multiple Felonies After Attempting to Solicit Teen For Sex

mar 22 elecciones
Cook County Sheriff's Office

A 32-year-old Berwyn man is facing multiple felony charges after attempting to meet with a 15-year-old girl that he had communicated with online for sex, according to officials.

Gerardo Melendez, of the 3600 block of Clinton Avenue, faces two felony counts of indecent solicitation of a child, as well as one felony count each of attempted aggravated criminal sexual abuse, traveling to meet a child, manufacturing harmful material and grooming.

According to the Cook County Sheriff's Office, investigators with the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) unit were put in contact with a woman who noticed alarming messages between her 15-year-old child and Melendez, a tattoo artist.

Police said that Melendez initially met the victim in November 2022 when the mother took her child to him for the child's first tattoo.

With the mother's consent, officers with the ICAC unit began posing as the victim and took over the conversation.

During this time of approximately four weeks, Melendez sent several sexually explicit texts and one explicit photo to who he believed was the 15-year-old.

Melendez then arranged to meet the teen outside a coffee shop in Lyons on the morning of Feb. 23. Upon his arrival, he was met by ICAC officers and taken into custody.

Melendez is scheduled to appear in bond court on Saturday.

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