Man sentenced to probation in teen sex sting
A Colorado Springs man who drove to Grand Junction in an attempt to meet and have sex with a 14-year-old girl in a local park was sentenced Friday to 10 years to life on probation.
Instead of meeting the girl, Metzler was met and arrested by local law enforcement who conducted an Internet sex sting in March 2007. An officer pretended to be a 14-year-old girl, corresponded online with Metzler and eventually arranged the Grand Junction meeting. When Metzler was arrested he had condoms, alcohol and pornography with him.
Metzler will have to register as a sex offender and pay several fines, including $1,500 for sex-offender surcharges and crimes against children, in exchange for pleading guilty to one felony count of enticement of a child.
Metzler on Friday told Mesa County District Judge Richard Gurley he had changed his ways and is sorry for making a “huge mistake.”
Gurley said he was concerned that Metzler appeared to minimize his involvement in the incident, according to interviews law enforcement conducted with Metzler prior to sentencing.
“Parents tell their kids to be careful of people online, and you’re one of those people parents are trying to warn their kids about,” Gurley said. “Coming 250 miles with a plan to have intercourse ... there was every indication it would have occurred if the person was 14 years of age.”
Gurley said he also was displeased that Metzler said he wanted a deferred sentence, and though he knew he made a mistake, “to have to pay for it for the rest of my life is crap,”
Gurley said, quoting Metzler’s report.
Metzler said he was frustrated with law enforcement because he spent a month in jail after his Global Positioning System unit indicated he had been in unauthorized areas, but the device malfunctioned.
Metzler will get credit for 80 days in jail. His attorney, Steve Laiche, said his client, who has minimal criminal history, had no violations on GPS and is undergoing sex-offender treatment.
Metzler, along with nearly a dozen others from around Colorado and other states, were arrested after the sting operation. Metzler’s case is one of the last to wend through the court system, and all the defendants have received sentences to probation and have had to register as sex offenders.