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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Ohio

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, June 28, 2018

Logan County Man Sentenced for Attempting to Have Sex with Minor 'Daughters' in Exchange for Handyman Work Through Craigslist

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Joseph L. Converse, 47, of Lakeview, Ohio, was sentenced in U.S. District Court to 188 months in prison and 15 years of supervised release for attempting to coerce and entice a minor.

Benjamin C. Glassman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Franklin County Sheriff Dallas Baldwin and other members of the Sheriff’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force announced the sentence handed down today by Chief U.S. District Judge Edmund A. Sargus, Jr.

According to court documents, in November 2017, a detective with the Franklin County Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force observed a posting on Craigslist titled “handyman for daughter or daughters.”

The post indicated the person placing the advertisement – Converse – was seeking to spend time with an underage female in exchange for car or house repairs, and that the time spent with a “daughter” would involve sexual activity. Specifically, the ad stated that “bareback must be okay” and that a “good faith bj” was required before any handyman work started.

The undercover detective responded, posing as the father of a school-aged female in Columbus needing brake work done on his car.

During their conversation, Converse repeatedly asked for pictures of the 14-year-old girl. When the detective said he had a four-wheel drive vehicle, Converse said he normally receives both vaginal and anal after such a job. When the detective expressed concern about Converse’s demand for anal and the possibility of pregnancy during vaginal intercourse, Converse said, “There is anal to [sic] for 4w drive” and asked if the child was a virgin.

After talking, Converse eventually traveled to Columbus to engage in sex acts with the fictitious minor. He was arrested upon arrival. Investigators discovered his phone, condoms, baby oil and baby lotion in his vehicle. Examination of the phone revealed all of the email and text conversations between Converse and the detective, as well as a Kik conversation in which Converse discussed performing plumbing work in exchange for sex with a 16-year-old girl.

Converse pleaded guilty in February 2018.

U.S. Attorney Glassman commended the cooperative investigation by the Franklin County ICAC, as well as Assistant United States Attorneys Heather A. Hill and Jonathan J.C. Grey, who are representing the United States in this case. 

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Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Contact: 
jennifer.thornton@usdoj.gov
Updated June 28, 2018