Man gets 30 years for trying to lure young kids into sex

A man who drove from Indiana to Garfield County for sex with children in a law enforcement sting operation agreed to a 30-year prison sentence after pleading guilty last week.

Steven Raines, 35, of Fort Wayne, Ind., stipulated to serve 30 years in prison after pleading guilty Oct. 24 to attempted coercion and enticement to engage in sex with a minor and distribution of child pornography, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Denver.

Raines, who remains in federal custody without bond, must also register as a sex offender. He’ll be sentenced Jan. 22 by U.S. District Judge R. Brooke Jackson.

A grand jury indictment said Raines in April starting chatting online with a federal agent who was posing as a single mother of two daughters, ages 4 and 14. Raines engaged the agent’s persona about having sex with her and her children, explaining at one point he’d been “searching for 20 years” for someone would provide sexual access to her children.

“I am bringing my collection of porn, to help teach them,” Raines wrote on May 31, during one chat, according to the indictment.

Raines began sending pictures, including suspected child pornography, while making plans with the agent to travel to Colorado. Raines expressed an interest in fathering a child with the agent’s persona, while expressing his main sexual interest in the fictitious 4-year-old daughter.

“Raines also discussed other children he knew from church or his neighborhood, in whom he had a sexual interest and with whom he attempted to have some sort of contact,” prosecutors wrote.

Raines started driving June 29, stopping the next day in Topeka, Kan., when his van broke down.

He arrived at a home at an undisclosed area of Garfield County around 8:30 p.m. on June 30, the indictment said.

“Raines knocked on the door and was met by law enforcement personnel,” the indictment said.


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