A 27-year-old Calgary man has been charged in connection with the alleged sexual abuse of three teen girls.
The investigation started last December when the family of a 14-year-old girl told police she had been meeting and driving around with a man in his late 20s, said Staff Sgt. Melanie Oncescu from the child abuse unit at a media availability Wednesday.
The girl told investigators the man had not committed any offences against her.
Further investigation, however, revealed the man had been meeting other underage teens online, using the screen names "Josh" and "Brandon" and posing as younger than he actually was, said Oncescu.
It's believed he used several different social media apps to communicate with his victims.
In April, a 13-year old girl told police the man had asked her for sex.
Police then identified two other alleged victims.
Christian Allen Sarile is charged with three counts each of sexual interference, invitation to sexual touching, sexual assault and offering something in exchange for sexual services — known as obtaining sexual services for consideration — from a person under 18 years of age.
His next court appearance is scheduled for June 6.
Oncescu says parents need to be mindful of what social media sites their children are using.
"They should know the passwords to their devices so they can check on them, and have really good conversations about internet safety with their kids," she said.
Oncescu said the good news seems to be that more and more, victims of such crimes seem to be increasingly comfortable in reporting them to police.
"You know, 10 years ago, nobody talked about these offences. They just weren't spoken about," she said.
"And I think that the stigma is being reduced and people are more confident that we're going to listen."
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