Ohio man again accused of trying to solicit sex from kids

John Charles Fortner is accused of trying to solicit children for sex, less than a month after getting out of prison for the same crime.

CHILLICOTHE, OH (WCMH) – A Chillicothe man is accused of trying to solicit children for sex, less than a month after getting out of prison for the same crime.

According to a federal complaint, a Westerville police officer working with the Franklin County Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force posted an advertisement on an online classified website posing as a single mother of three children, ages 12, eight and five.

The posting was looking to chat with “taboo” subjects who were “open minded” and interested in “taboo fetishes,” according to court documents.

On August 5, investigators say John Charles Fortner responded to the posting.

According to court documents, the message said, “Hi, can we do your daughter or son? Not sure if you would like me.”

In later emails, investigators say Fortner asked for pictures of the children and sent a photo of his penis.

The conversation moved to the Kik Messenger app, where the exchanges became more explicit.

Court documents state Fortner expressed interest in performing oral sex on all of the children as well as watching the officer’s persona perform oral sex on them.

Fortner also sent the officer screenshots showing child pornography, according to investigators.

Investigators said Fortner agreed to meet with the undercover officer at a bar on East Main Street in Chillicothe.

The complaint described the setup of the meeting:

“The two then agreed on 2:00 pm as a meeting time. [Redacted] asked Fortner, “Would you still want to meet my daughter to see if everything is ok between you too? So long as everything is cool between us and your not the police lol”. Former responded. “Yeah, just want to make sure you not too. lol So right now we just say no sexual plans”. Fortner followed this last message with a winking face emoji.”

According to Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections records, Fortner was released from prison on July 7, after serving a sentence for importuning and attempted unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.

He is still on parole as part of that sentence. He is registered as a Tier III sex offender.

Fortner was arrested and charged with a federal count of attempted coercion or enticement of a minor for unlawful sexual activity and distribution of child pornography. He is being held at the Franklin County Jail.

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