Plane passenger spots man texting about sex abuse of kids

Plane passenger spots man texting about sex abuse of kids


Seattle police say a passenger on a plane spotted a fellow traveler texting someone about sexually exploiting children and contacted authorities as soon as she landed.

The passenger was flying on Monday from Seattle to San Jose, California, when she glanced over, read the man’s texts and took pictures of the conversation.

Police say the man was texting a woman who has access to children as either a caregiver or baby-sitter.

Seattle’s Internet Crimes Against Children unit located the woman and arrested her at a house in Tacoma. She was living with her ex-husband, his new wife and three children.

She and the man from the plane were arrested in connection with the text messages.

San Jose, California, police say they arrested 56-year-old Michael Kellar in the city’s airport Monday night after a flight from Seattle. Officers arrested 50-year-old Gail Burnworth in her Tacoma home.

Investigators say it appears that two children, ages 5 and 7, have been sexually assaulted.

The plane passenger told authorities that a man sitting in front of her was texting about the abuse with a large font on a large smartphone. She alerted a flight attendant, who notified an officer stationed at the airport.

Kellar and Burnworth are in jail Wednesday, and it’s not known if they have lawyers to speak on their behalf.

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