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Virginia State Police Trooper Stalked Teen For Sex - Earning the Love - Back The Blue

TwoFeather
TwoFeather - 638 Views
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Published on 29 Nov 2022 / In News and Politics

A Virginia law enforcement worker has been killed in a shootout with deputies in California after he allegedly murdered the mother and grandparents of a teenage girl he catfished online, before trying to escape with the teen, police said on Sunday.

Officers were initially called to the La Sierra South neighborhood in Riverside, California, on Friday just after 11 a.m. to check on the welfare of a girl who appeared distressed while getting into a Red Kia Soul with a man, the Riverside Police Department said in a news release.

While officers were responding, police began to receive calls about a structural fire just a few houses away from where the welfare call was reported, they said.

The Riverside Fire Department arrived at the residence to find a fire on the first floor. When they made entry they discovered three adult victims lying on the ground, police said.

"Their bodies were pulled outside where it was determined they were victims of an apparent homicide," the Riverside Police Department said, adding that firefighters were able to put the fire out.

During a preliminary investigation, detectives found out that the girl described in the initial welfare call had lived at the house where the three people were found dead, police said.

Authorities were also able to identify the man she was seen with as 28-year-old Austin Lee Edwards of North Chesterfield, Virginia, who detectives learned had worked for the Virginia State Police until being recently employed at the Washington County Sheriff’s Office in the state of Virginia.

Several hours later, authorities were able to track Edwards' vehicle down as he was driving with the teen through San Bernardino County in the unincorporated area of Kelso.

When deputies with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department caught up Edwards, the suspect fired gunshots at them, before being fatally shot by at least one deputy, police said. Edwards was pronounced dead at the scene, they said.

The teen was unharmed and was placed into protective custody of the Riverside County Department of Public Social Services, police said.

"Detectives determined Edwards had met the female teenager through the common form of online deception known as 'catfishing,' where someone pretends to be a different person than they actually are," the Riverside Police Department said.

Police said it was believed Edwards had developed an online relationship with the teen and was able to obtain her personal information.

He travelled from Virginia to Riverside, where he parked his vehicle in a neighbor's driveway and walked to the teen's home, at some point murdering her mother, grandfather and grandmother before walking back to his vehicle with the teen and leaving, police said.

The slain family members were identified as 69-year-old Mark Winek, his wife 65-year-old Sharie Winek, and their daughter, 38-year-old Brooke Winek, police said. The exact cause and manner of their deaths were still pending, they said. The cause of the fire at the residence was also still under investigation, but police said it appeared to have been intentionally ignited.

A spokesperson for the Virginia State Police said Edwards entered its academy July 6, 2021 and graduated as a trooper on Jan. 21 of this year. He was assigned to Henrico County, which is within the Richmond Division, they said, before resigning on Oct. 28. The spokesperson did not expand on the circumstances surrounding Edwards' resignation. They did not immediately respond to a request for further information.

It was not immediately clear what role Edwards held within the Washington County Sheriff’s Office. The sheriff's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from NBC News.

“Our hearts go out to the Winek family and their loved ones during this time of tremendous grief, as this is a tragedy for all Riversiders,” stated Riverside Police Chief Larry Gonzalez. “This is yet another horrific reminder of the predators existing online who prey on our children. If you’ve already had a conversation with your kids on how to be safe online and on social media, have it again. If not, start it now to better protect them.”

Police said the investigation into the incident was still ongoing. They asked anyone with information to contact them and said those wishing to remain anonymous can email [email protected]

#BackTheBlueUntilItHappensToYou #BlueOnBlueViolence #StopGovViolence

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hatbox
hatbox 2 months ago

I'm not sure what the teenage girl saw in the guy. She is partially at fault in this as she seems to have encouraged his attention to a certain degree. It's a tragedy, and you can't help but wonder what the future holds for the girl now. You'd think this cop's proclivities would have shown up in any psychological testing he may have had prior to getting hired.

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TwoFeather
TwoFeather 2 months ago

hiring of police standards are EXTREMELY Low. I was working and living near Atlanta Georgia for a few years. there was a former Sheriff who was blowing the whistle on the new sheriff corruption. the new sheriff had two deputies on his force that were felon hitmen from Haiti and the new sheriff had those hitmen deputies kill the former sheriff in his driveway

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hatbox
hatbox 2 months ago

@TwoFeather: I can believe it. So many seem corrupt, and brutal, now.

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