Office of the Attorney General
Attorney General Conway Announces Conviction of Online Sexual Predator
Attorney General Jack Conway and Campbell County Commonwealth’s Attorney Jack L. Porter today announced the conviction of an online sexual predator arrested during the Attorney General’s sting in Highland Heights, Kentucky in April, 2007. David L. Quist of Ft. Thomas, Kentucky was convicted of one count of attempted unlawful transaction with a minor, a Class C felony, in connection with his solicitation of what he thought was a 13-year-old girl for sex.
“This verdict makes clear that Kentucky juries stand ready to convict Internet predators who are trying to have inappropriate contact with our children,” said General Conway. “I’m so proud of the work of Campbell County Commonwealth’s Attorney Jack Porter and First Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Michelle Snodgrass, who tried this case, and of the investigators at the Attorney General’s Office who put together such a strong case.”
The jury wasted little time in reaching its decision to convict Quist and recommended a sentence of ten years, the maximum sentence for the offense. Formal sentencing by Judge Julie Reinhardt Ward is scheduled for April 21, 2008.
The case was investigated by the Attorney General’s Office with assistance from the online watchdog group Perverted-Justice. The Highlands Heights and Campbell County police departments assisted with the investigation, as did the Campbell County Attorney’s Office. Investigative Mechanics provided technical support for the sting.
Quist is the first defendant charged in any of the Attorney General’s three stings to be tried by a jury. The three stings in Louisville, Highland Heights and Bowling Green have lead to the arrests of 29 men, who are charged with sex offenses related to their solicitation of undercover decoys posing as 12 or 13-year-old children. All of the other defendants have either pleaded guilty or are awaiting trial. None of the defendants has been acquitted or had charges dismissed.
“There has been some ambiguity about these types of cases, because there isn't an actual child involved - our collaboration prevented a child from becoming a victim,” said Snodgrass. “The successful prosecution of offenders like David Quist sends the message to other Internet sexual predators to leave our children alone.”