Man Charged with Sexting Young Girls

By: WSAZ News Staff; Andrew Colegrove Email
By: WSAZ News Staff; Andrew Colegrove Email

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A Huntington man is facing felony charges after investigators say he was sexting and video chatting with young girls.

Charles Matthew Cooper, 25, of Huntington, was arrested early Friday morning.

West Virginia State Police say they were contacted by police in Seaman, Ohio, which is in Adams County. Seaman Police said Cooper was sending explicit texts and pornographic images to teenage girls.

The alleged incidents happened between March 1 and March 7.

The father of a 14-year-old girl found the images on his daughter's phone and contacted police.

Seaman Police then purchased a cell phone and portrayed a 14-year-old female and contacted Cooper. Police say Cooper sent more explicit texts to the police, believing he was chatting with a young girl.

Investigators also found three other girls, who were 13 years old that Cooper allegedly was video chatting with in a sexual manner.

West Virginia State Police executed a search warrant at Cooper's Huntington home and confiscated his computer and cell phone.

It's a type of crime West Virginia State Trooper Will Hash says is just about the most sickening thing they deal with.

"The web of seduction that is out there to entice and seduce and to lure these juveniles into their mentality and to lower to their level, it's scary, and it's just increasing," Hash said.

During an interview with Cooper, State Police say he confessed to contacting the young girls and sending them explicit pictures and texts messages. He also admitted that he knew how old the girls were.

Cooper told State Police that he met the young girls on Facebook and said, "You can be whoever you want to when it comes to the Internet."

He admitted that he wanted to entice, seduce and solicit the girls.

Cooper also told State Police that he had discussed meeting the young girls, but told them he would not travel to Ohio, that they would have to come to West Virginia to meet him.

"I think it would have continued on if he hadn't got caught," Hash said.

Cooper is charged with soliciting a minor via computer, distribution and display to minor of obscene matter, and use of obscene matter with the intent to seduce a minor.

If convicted on all charges, Cooper faces 20 years in prison and several thousands of dollars in fines.

He also faces charges in Ohio. The Seaman police are turning the case over to the Adams County Prosecutor's Office.

WSAZ requested an interview from jail with Cooper, but he declined.

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