Deputies: 12 arrested in child predator sting

FSU attorney, Florida House employee who worked with teens among arrests

By Vic Micolucci - Reporter, anchor , News4Jax.com Staff

LAKE CITY, Fla. - A dozen men, including a prominent state university attorney, were arrested during a weeklong child predator investigation, known as "Operation Cupid's Arrow," that stretched from Tallahassee to Lake City, authorities announced Thursday.

Detectives and agents from the North Florida Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC) took part in the investigation. 

Investigators said they found child sex predators in chat rooms, dating sites and social media networks using instant messaging, texting and online classified ads.

Suspects came from all backgrounds from blue-collar workers to attorneys, including Dayton Cramer, the former associate general counsel for Florida State University, who resigned from his position after his arrest.

An affidavit alleges Cramer responded this month to fake ads posted by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in which he thought he was communicating with the stepmother of a 13-year-old girl. The affidavit includes email messages where Cramer allegedly acknowledges the girl's age and describes what he wants to do with her.

Another man arrested was a former Florida House of Representatives employee who oversaw the chamber’s page and messenger program, which includes teenagers.

Michael A. Chmielewksi was arrested after soliciting a Leon County Sheriff’s undercover officer posing as a 14-year-old girl on the internet, according to a report from WCTV.

Chmielewski managed the approximately 200 to 300 pages and messengers who work in the House during each annual legislative session.

The youths range in age from 13 to 18 years old. According to the WCTV report, Chmielewski made several sexually explicit remarks to the undercover agent while online and then traveled to meet what he thought was a 14-year-old and was arrested.

Chmielewski was immediately terminated from his House job.

Investigators said all suspects believed that they were speaking with children or parents of children under the age of 15, and all arranged to meet children for sex, authorities said. 

Some of the men even sent explicit pictures and went to meet the detectives posing as children, deputies said.

The sheriff and an FBI agent said Thursday that this is just one group of arrests and many more are to come, so predators should beware.

"My word to these folks that want to get out there on the internet and mess with our children, it is a day in and day out operation. We have continuous operation going 365 days a year," Columbia County Sheriff Mark Hunter said. "We are going to continue to do that as long as we have these type of people out there."

"We are committed to protecting this community, and predators should know that the FBI and our partners will stop at nothing and use every available resource to identify and stop those who seek to exploit our children," said Agent Carlton Peeples, assistant special agent in charge of the FBI's Jacksonville Division.

The names and charges of those arrested in the sting are listed below:

  • Tony Sheldon, 38, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • Philip Graham, 41, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • William Hall, 64, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • Calvin McFarland, 21, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • Kyl Johnson, 26, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • Christopher Francis, 34, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • Darrel Harvey, 48, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • Matthew Carter, 33, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • Frantisek Pribyl, 47, attempted enticement of a minor and traveling to meet a minor for sex acts
  • Michael Chmielewski, 37, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child
  • Dayton M. (Mike) Cramer, 70, attempted enticement of a minor
  • James Singletary, 53, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure child and obscene communication use computer to seduce solicit/lure child

McFarland is from Jacksonville and Johnson is from Lake City.

“I am grateful for all the partnering agencies participating in this operation," Hunter said. "Removing these predators from our communities will go a long way in keeping our children safe.”

He said parents must get involved to protect their children from predators.

"I think there is an important message for us, as well. We need to talk to our children. We need to play a role in their lives and monitor what they're doing on social media and online," Hunter said. "As law enforcement, we're going to do all we can to help protect our families, but we know there are adults preying on our children right now online."

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