Text to Wrong Number Leads Police to Suspected Child Predator in Mayflower

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One woman’s text message to the wrong phone number in Mayflower last week ignited a flurry of responses seeking sex, according to a police report.

A Mayflower police report states the conversation turned criminal when the woman posed as a 12-year-old child in an effort to end the chat. However, the chat continued and the content worsened.

A police report states the man sent explicit photos after the woman indicated she was 12 years old. She handed off the messages to detectives at the Mayflower Police Department.

“We basically took the information that she had gathered from him and hers communication and built a case file from that,” Lt. Wesley Tyra with Mayflower PD says.

Mayflower PD teamed up with the Faulkner County Sheriff’s Office to track down a 57-year-old man named Andrew Scherell.

Undercover deputies took over and messaged Scherell, posing as a 14-year-old child.

The report states Scherrell agreed to meet the child for shopping and sex at a Greenbrier Walmart. Instead, he was met with handcuffs.

“You have to act on this kind of stuff because they’re predators,” Lt. Tyra says.

“That’s what they do.”

Body-camera footage of Scherell from a traffic stop one year ago shows Scherell in the midst of a traffic stop. Officers say Scherrell is from Australia and his only ID documentation is a passport.

For investigators, this video offered more help.

“We were able to put two and two together with that information and find out some of his identifiers,” Lt. Tyra says.

“Because before that it was just a guy and a name.”

A name that is now next to mug shot, thanks to one woman’s work from home behind a smartphone.

Lt. Tyra adds: “We’re thankful for her more than us.”

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