Internet Predator Pleads Guilty
A Little River man caught in an undercover sting operation conducted by the Georgetown County Sheriff's Office plead guilty to one count of Criminal Solicitation of a Minor and one count of Attempted Dissemination of Obscene Material to a Person Under 18 Years of Age, the Solicitor's Office says.
"These offenses stemmed from an investigation that occurred when Ryan Sean Bowlen placed an ad on Craigslist.com that solicited sex from a minor child. Through e-mails and text messages, Bowlen communicated with and sent images of his genitals to a minor whom he believed to be 14-years-old," a press release states. "After communicating for several weeks, Bowlen traveled to meet the minor, where he was then arrested. Subsequent to his arrest, Bowlen consented to the forfeiture of his seized computer."Criminal Investigator Ginger Pop, with the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit (Horry and Georgetown Counties), made this case.
For each offense, Bowlen was sentenced to concurrently serve 10 years suspended to 5 years of incarceration followed by 3 years of probation. Additionally, during Bowlen’s guilty plea, Pop demonstrated that Bowlen’s actions were for the purpose of engaging in sex with the minor or getting the minor to perform sexual acts in his presence. Therefore, once Bowlen is released from incarceration, he will be required under South Carolina law to register as a Sex Offender for the remainder of his life.
Prior to his guilty plea, Judge J. Michael Baxley sentenced Bowlen to serve 90 days in jail for Criminal Contempt of Court, after testifying during a bond revocation hearing. The 90-day sentence must run consecutively to the 5 years he will serve on these charges.
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