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Man arrested for prank sexual calls after two-year search

After two years of making prank sexual calls, Barry North, of Kelso, finally met his match.

Washington State Patrol Detective Victoria Mauro, a member of the state’s Missing and Exploited Children Task Force (MECTF), was contacted by a Cowlitz County detective Dec. 27, 2005. He told Mauro that a man was calling department stores in Kitsap County posing as a radio DJ and offering prizes to children in the toy department. Once the man had the child on the phone, he would say sexual phrases and desires. The Cowlitz County detective said it reminded him of a case out of Round Lake Beach, Ill.

“A lot of the same kind of phone calls were happening across the country,” said Deputy Scott Wilson, Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office spokesman.

Police agencies throughout the country were unable to trace the cell phone calls until Mauro got a hold of the case information from Illinois, which included North’s cell phone records.

“Nobody was able to tap a telephone number, we were at a loss,” Wilson said.

Mauro searched through the phone records and saw that North called Fred Meyer in Port Orchard in March 2005 and East Bremerton’s Fred Meyer store in December 2005. North offered a gift certificate and Barbie doll to a child who would agree to speak with him on the phone, according to reports.

Kitsap County deputy prosecutor Kelly Montgomery issued two felony warrants for North’s arrest, both for communicating with a minor for immoral purposes. North was arrested and appeared in Kitsap County Superior Court Sept. 20. He was bailed out of jail for $100,000 and a trial date is scheduled for December.

“That’s really good work on the part of that detective with state patrol,” Wilson said.

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