CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - A Canadian man is behind bars in central Virginia tonight after he was arrested for attempting to solicit a minor online, thanks to the Greene County Sheriff’s Department’s Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) unit.
Patrick Adam Lawrence, 61, was arrested following a month-long ICAC investigation. Lawrence had been communicating online for some time with what he thought was a 14-year-old living in Greene County while he was driving a tractor trailer around the United States. Lawrence was apprehended in Buffalo, N.Y. as he tried to return to Canada.
Lawrence is currently being held without bond at Central Virginia Regional Jail. He is charged with 10 counts total relating to the investigation, including 5 counts of proposing a sexual act with a minor.
GREENE COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT PRESS RELEASE - 6/20/2020
On June 5, 2020 the Greene County Sheriff’s Office Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) unit made an arrest.
Through the course of investigation by Greene County Sheriff’s Office ICAC while utilizing online apps, a suspect engaged into a conversation with what he thought was a 14-year-old child located in Greene County. The suspect was engaging with the “juvenile” over the course of a month as he traveled around the United States driving a tractor trailer. With assistance from multiple agencies the suspect was taken into custody in Buffalo New York as he was attempting to cross back into Canada.
The Greene County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank the following agencies for their assistance:
United States Marshalls
Department of Homeland Security
United States Border Patrol
New York State Police
Buffalo Police Department
Patrick Adam Lawrence, age 61 from Canada was charged with the following felony offenses:
5 Counts of 18.2-374.3 – Computer Solicitation of a Minor
5 Counts of 18.2-370 – Propose a sexual act with a minor
On June 19,2020 Mr. Lawrence was transported back to Virginia and is currently being held without bond at the Central Virginia Regional Jail.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Investigator Jason Tooley with the Greene County Sheriff’s Office at (434)985-2222.
Photograph of Patrick Adam Lawrence is attached.
The Greene County Sheriff’s Office ICAC unit which is part of the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force urges parents to be involved in what their children are doing on the computer and know what sites they are visiting. Parents need to ensure that children know about internet safety and the dangers of online predators. In addition, parents are urged not to allow children to have electronic devices in their rooms at nighttime.
For more information regarding internet safety tips, please visit the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Website at http://www.sovaicac.org/