Man walks 351 miles to meet underage teen who was actually an undercover cop, authorities say

Man walks 351 miles to meet underage teen who was actually an undercover cop, authorities say

A convicted pedophile walked 351 miles to meet an underage girl he had been talking to over instant messenger.

The incident took place in Wisconsin, where 32-year-old Tommy Lee Jenkins had begun speaking to a teenager identified only as "Kylee". But little did he know that he was actually speaking to a sheriff's deputy, the US Attorney's Office reported.

A scowling sex offender. Credit: Winnebago County Jail

Jenkins harassed the teenager, who he believed to be 14, imploring her to send him explicit photographs and meet him for sex, officials revealed.

According to court documents, the 32-year-old suggested that the girl get drunk with him and meet him in Indiana.

When the girl refused to meet him for sex, he subsequently set off on a 351-mile journey to where he believed she lived in Neenah, Wisconsin. Throughout the journey, the convicted pedophile kept her updated on his physical progress and continued to send her explicit messages.

A child using a computer. Credit: Pexels

Needless to say, Jenkins' hike did not end the way he expected to when he was confronted by authorities, specifically, officers and the FBI, it was revealed on Friday.

The 32-year-old was subsequently charged with using a computer to persuade, induce or entice a minor to engage in unlawful sexual activity - a crime which could see him behind bars for up to 10 years.

In his messages to "Kylee", Jenkins wrote that he wanted to have 500 children with the teen, beginning with a pregnancy this year, the Oshkosh Northwestern reported.

A man looking out a prison cell. Credit: Pexels

"Our nation faces an epidemic of child sexual abuse, with the Internet making it too easy for predators to communicate with children across the country," said US Attorney Matthew Krueger.

Jenkins' first brush with the law took place in 2011 when he was charged with two counts of repeated first-degree sexual assault of the same unidentified child. These were later reduced to four counts of child abuse, for which he was sentenced to four years on probation in 2012.