Detectives say man blames meth addiction for cybersex crimes

Booking photo of Preston Chauvin (Putnam County Sheriff's Office)

A Palatka man who had been under investigation since early July for alleged cybersex crimes told detectives his actions were the result of his addiction to methamphetamines, according to Putnam County detectives who arrested him.

Preston Chauvin, 36, was arrested Wednesday afternoon on multiple charges of transmitting nude pictures over the internet to what he thought was a 14-year old girl to lure the child. Chauvin is also charged with cruelty towards a child and drug possession.

According to a heavily redacted arrest report obtained by News4Jax, Chauvin had sent multiple nude pictures of himself to an undercover detective who was posing as an underage girl. Investigators also noted in the report that Chauvin had sent explicit videos of himself performing a sex act to the same detective.

According to the report, Chauvin had asked the detective to send him an explicit video via Facebook video chat. Throughout the report, Chauvin is reminded that he is communicating with a 14-year-old and confirms his age and what he explicitly wanted from the teen.

Wednesday morning, detectives confirmed Chauvin’s location and took him into custody at a Palatka apartment complex.

During questioning, Chauvin initially denied knowledge of any pictures or videos and even said an unknown person hacked his online account, the report states.

Chauvin eventually told investigators he was guilty of everything he was accused of and that his actions were the result of his addiction to meth.

A detective also noted in the report that when Chauvin was strip-searched at the jail, tattoos on his body were identical to tattoos in the nude images and videos transmitted online.

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