WASHINGTON COUNTY, Ore. – A school staff member and the director of child development programs were among six people snared on Thursday in Washington County, Oregon for the crimes of luring a minor and online sexual corruption of a child in the first degree; both felony offenses, according to law enforcement authorities.
One person arrested was identified as Te’Vari Jenkins, 26, of Gresham. He is the Director of Childhood Development Programs for the Club K program in the Wilsonville area. Another person who was taken into custody was identified as Sean Baba, 29, of Portland. He is the Director of Music Ministry at St. Pius X Church and School in Cedar Mill, the Post Millennial reported.
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office provided the following investigative overview in its press release:
“On April 13, 2023, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office conducted a child predator sting where investigators used multiple dating applications, social media sites, and other online platforms to pose as underage boys and girls. The people contacted the profiles online and offered to meet a person they believed to be a child for sex. When the people arrived to meet the child, they were instead contacted by law enforcement and arrested.
“During the mission, multiple people immediately ended their conversations once they learned the person they were talking to clearly identified as a minor who provided a specific age. …”
Furthermore, “The Sheriff’s Office regularly conducts undercover operations, both full-scale stings and day-to-day chats, targeting child predators. The Sheriff’s Office receives thousands of child abuse reports each year and these pro-active missions are designed to identify and contact people before they victimize an actual child.”
In addition to Jenkins and Baba, the sheriff’s office provided a complete list of those arrested for the same crimes during the sting:
- Sean Baba, 29, of Portland. Baba was working as the Director of Music Ministry at St. Pius X Church and School in the Cedar Mill community. The church and school were notified of his arrest and have fully cooperated with the investigation.
- Henry Banegas Interiano, 26, of Portland
- Ethan Caddy, 19, of Vancouver
- Te’Vari Jenkins, 26, of Gresham. Jenkins was working as a Director of Child Development Programs for the Club K program in the Wilsonville area.
- Sincere Peoples, 21, of Beaverton
- Jackson T. West, 27, of Portland
Baba’s employer, St. Pius X, is a Catholic church and school located in the Cedar Mill suburb of Portland.
Jenkin’s employer, Club K in Wilsonville, is an after school program that serves several cities in Oregon to “support children and youth in discovering and developing their talents, strengths, and skills through an enriching, fun, and inspiring after school environment,” according to their website.
Media Release: Six People Arrested in Undercover Child Predator Sting https://t.co/Qso7hxHBAx
If you have additional tips or information about these suspects, please call us at 503-846-2700. pic.twitter.com/xr1hHbSaWn
— Washington County Sheriff’s Office (Oregon) (@WCSOOregon) April 14, 2023
Detective Mark Povolny spoke to local news outlet KGW, and said, “We say we’re underage, and we give them a specific age and then they end the chat or say that, you know, that’s not OK and walk away, which is great. I’d love to do a mission where we don’t arrest anybody because every single person doesn’t show up,” he added “Unfortunately, that’s never happened for us.”
Child predators are a serious problem in Oregon, as the state has the most registered sex offenders per capita in the nation, according to an April 10 survey from safehome.org.
The report asserts there are 772 sex offenders per 100,000 residents in Oregon. The state of Arkansas came in second with 606 per 100,000. In 2022, the number of sex offenders rose about 3 percent in the U.S., the Post Millennial reported.
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office believes the alleged perpetrators have victimized more individuals. They are asking anyone with additional information to call 503-846-2700.
WCSO thanked the Lake Oswego Police Department for assisting with the sting.