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114 People Arrested In “Operation Not So Silent Night”

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Winter Haven, Florida – Sheriff Grady Judd will brief the media at 10:00 a.m. today about a six-day-long undercover operation focusing on human trafficking, called “Operation Not So Silent Night.”


During the six-day-long undercover investigation from Thursday, December 8th through Tuesday, December 13th, 2016, focusing on those who advertise prostitution services in online ads and identifying victims of human trafficking, Polk County Sheriff’s undercover detectives arrested a total of 114 suspects, and charged an additional two suspects with warrants.

During the investigation, female undercover detectives posted fictitious ads online, and male undercover detectives responded to ads posted online by others. The types of suspects arrested were: those who responded to the ads posted by the undercover detectives, or “johns;” those who came to the undercover location to have sex for money, or “prostitutes;” two suspects who traveled to the undercover location to have sex with minors; and others associated with both types of suspects.

“We are exceptionally pleased that we were able to potentially identify four victims of human trafficking, which is the goal of this operation. We are thrilled that we arrested two men who prey upon children, preventing them from doing so. We are extremely disappointed that we arrested a high-ranking official within the Osceola County School Board, whose occupation focuses on teaching and mentoring children.” – Grady Judd, Sheriff

Of the 114 suspects arrested, PCSO detectives believe four are victims of human trafficking, and investigations are ongoing.

Of the 114 suspects arrested, the following will be discussed in more detail at our news conference.

Two suspects traveled to the undercover location to have sex with who they thought were children. According to their affidavits:

*       48-year-old Thomas Davis, of Mashpee, Massachusetts, began sending instant messages to an undercover detective posing as a 14-year-old girl online. During their online conversation, Davis solicited the “girl” to send him nude photos of herself, and sent her photos of himself, including nude photos. Davis then drove to the undercover location and was arrested and charged with Use of Computer To Seduce Child (F-3), Use of Two-Way Communication Device to Commit Felony (F-3), Traveling to Meet a Minor (F-2), Attempted Lewd Battery (F-2), and Transmission of Harmful Material to Minor (F-3). After his arrest, Davis admitted to detectives that he sent photos to who he believed was a 14-year-old girl, and came to the undercover location to have sex with her.

*       33-year-old Oscar Gonzalez, of Haines City, began talking to an undercover detective posing as a 14-year-old boy on a social networking site, and then via text message. Gonzalez then drove to the undercover location and was arrested and charged with Use of Computer To Seduce Child (F-3), Use of Two-Way Communication Device to Commit Felony (F-3), Traveling to Meet a Minor (F-2), Attempted Lewd Battery (F-2), and Resisting Arrest (M-1). After his arrest, Gonzalez admitted to detectives that he believed he was talking to a 14-year-old boy, and came to the undercover location to have sex with him, and that his wife and children were living in Mexico.

Other significant arrests include:

*       42-year-old Matthew Phillips, PhD, of St. Cloud, FL, is the Director of Elementary Curriculum at the Osceola County School Board. He arrived at the undercover location to have sex with a prostitute. He was arrested and charged with Offer to Engage in Lewdness, and Battery.

*       50-year-old Matthew Irvin of Oakland, FL, told detectives that he told his wife he was going out to buy Christmas presents for his children, but came to the undercover location instead, to have sex with a prostitute. He was arrested and charged with Offer to Engage in Lewdness.

*       33-year-old Erik Hernandez of Kissimmee, FL, told detectives after he was arrested that he had hurt his back setting up for his 9-year-old daughter’s birthday party that same day, and that he came to the undercover location to get a massage. He answered an online ad and arrived at the undercover location to have sex with a prostitute. He was arrested and charged with Offer to Engage in Lewdness, and Battery.

*       33-year-old Michael Campanaro of Clermont, FL, identified himself as a corrections officer with the Federal Bureau of Prisons in Coleman, Florida. He was arrested and charged with Offer to Engage in Lewdness.

*       44-year-old Santos Rivera of Orlando, FL, told detectives he is a 20-year retired police officer from Puerto Rico. He was arrested and charged with Offer to Engage in Lewdness.

*       40-year-old Michael Bonislawski of Davenport, FL, told detectives his pregnant wife was at home, and that their baby was due the same day he showed up to the undercover location. He was arrested and charged with Offer to Engage in Lewdness.

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