Robert Thomas Jr., 36, wanted to buy a little girl; the younger the better and sooner rather than later, police say.
Awaiting the child at Thomas’ home in Cuyahoga Falls would have been a minefield of pornography and an array of sexual contraptions designed to keep the girl in line, police say.
The allegations against Thomas, and details of his efforts to procure a young girl he could “marry,” are contained in a police search warrant obtained Tuesday by the Beacon Journal.
The 14-page document outlines Thomas’ personal ad on the Internet, his calls with an undercover agent offering a “child” for sale, and Thomas’ desire to move forward with the deal, despite offers to call off the arrangement.
But rather than backing away, Thomas forged ahead, driving to Alliance on Saturday with the notion of paying $400 and taking a 10-year-old girl home with him.
Instead, he was met by the same undercover agents who first found his Internet ad.
Thomas is jailed under a $2 million bond while awaiting a grand jury indictment in Stark County. He faces attempted rape and kidnapping charges, as well as charges of felony human trafficking and possession of criminal tools.
More charges could follow as his computer and an assortment of DVDs found in his home are examined.
Thomas’ Internet ad first caught the attention of agents with the Ohio Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force on Jan. 6, court records show. The ad was placed on a social media website using Thomas’ profile name “dvldog01.”
The posting said Thomas was single and “looking for parents to arrange for him to marry their daughter.” A female task force agent then sent Thomas an email message. The agent pretended to be a man with a girl for sale.
Thomas was told about the contact’s 14-year-old daughter and “Thomas told [the agent] that he was interested.”
“Thomas told [the undercover agent] that the younger the better and [he] was asking for a juvenile female between the ages of 5 to 8,” Alliance police Detective Matthew Shatzer wrote in an affidavit used to procure a search warrant of Thomas’ house.
Eventually, Thomas agreed to pay $400 “to purchase a 10-year-old female that he could keep,” Shatzer wrote. “Thomas wrote [in an email] that he wanted to have fun with her and make her his ‘slut.’ ”
Police say they recorded several phone calls with Thomas and in one conversation two days before his arrest, officers “provided an opportunity to back out of the deal, but Thomas stated that he still wanted to do it.”
“Thomas told [agents] that he wanted to do this ‘the sooner the better.’ ”
Police say Thomas also promised to provide photos of the girl once he took custody of her. He made the comment during a meeting with undercover agents moments before his arrest at a meeting spot in Alliance on Saturday afternoon.
After his arrest, police say Thomas confessed to the events leading to his arrest and told officers they could find child pornography at his Tudor Street home in the Falls.
Police searched the residence late Saturday night. The search was approved by Stow Municipal Court Judge Lisa Coates.
According to court records, police went to Thomas’ master bedroom and found miscellaneous sex toys, including a “sex swing” stored inside a bag.
Officers also found large amounts of pornographic magazines and videos in boxes and an Igloo cooler located in a second bedroom. Also in the room were a bondage mask and leather collars, the report shows.
Police seized a number of CDs and DVDs and a laptop computer that will be examined for evidence of pornography depicting children. More pornography and computer discs was found in a crawl space off the master bedroom. They also seized a 60-inch HD TV.
Thomas, an auto mechanic, is single and lives alone in the house with his three dogs. Police said he collected guns and they seized several antique firearms as well as two handguns.