St. Helens police arrest man in underage sex sting
MD Shahidul Islam, 26, jailed after alleged online relationship with minor
St. Helens police arrested a Beaverton man Saturday, Jan. 10, whom they said was attempting to arrange a sexual encounter with a teenage girl.
MD Shahidul Islam, 26, had been involved in an online relationship with a 14-year-old St. Helens girl for several months, according to St. Helens Police Chief Terry Moss. After the girl told her parents that the conversations had become sexual, the girl's father reported the relationship to a St. Helens police detective, Anthony Miltich, and turned over the cell phone the two used to communicate, according to the police. Moss said Miltich then used the phone to message Islam and arrange a meeting at the Wal-Mart in St. Helens, where Islam was arrested Saturday.
Credit for a successful resolution to this case belongs with the parents of the victim, said Moss in a written statement. Because they were involved and engaged in a trusting relationship, she was comfortable in telling them what happened. It made all the difference.
Islam faces charges of online sexual corruption of a minor in the first and second degrees, luring of a minor, and attempted rape in the third degree.
He was lodged in the Columbia County Jail.
Islam was driving a dark gray Toyota Prius when arrested. Moss said several officers were involved in the operation and Islam did not resist arrest.
Moss said Islam is a cab driver in the Portland area, and he said police are concerned he may have preyed on minors in other communities.
However, he added, I think we're comfortable or confident that this young lady was [his] only victim, or intended victim, locally.
According to Moss, the relationship between Islam and the St. Helens girl started online and was conducted exclusively online and by text message.
He portrayed himself to be somebody that he wasn't, which I think is one of the grooming techniques of predators, whether it be in person or over the Web, Moss said.
Moss said he could not immediately recall another sex-related sting operation carried out by St. Helens police, although he said the tactic is commonly used to combat drug-related offenses. He said the district attorney's office advised the police on how to proceed with the sting before Islam was arrested.
Police are looking for more information about Islam. They are asking anyone who knows more about the suspect to contact Miltich at 503-397-3333 or 503-397-1521.
Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional information and quotes from the St. Helens police chief.JW_DISQUS_ADD_A_COMMENT