CHEHALIS, Wash. – Twelve individuals were taken into custody in Lewis County this weekend as part of a multi-agency operation identifying those allegedly involved in the sexual abuse and exploitation of children.
The multi-day operation involved the Washington State Patrol (WSP), local Lewis County law enforcement agencies and several partner agencies. The cases will be reviewed by the Lewis County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office to determine which potential criminal charges will be filed.
“It is unfortunate that there are some that are actively preying on children. However, it is reassuring to know that so many agencies are willing to respond to help hold those people accountable,” said Lewis County Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer. “We are thankful for the federal and state agencies that conducted this operation and the support of multiple local agencies. Coordination of law enforcement partners is vital to help ensure the safety of the people of Lewis County.”
Dubbed “Operation Net Nanny,” this is the 20th operation spearheaded by the WSP’s Missing and Exploited Children Task Force (MECTF), an Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) affiliate. Since the first operation in August 2015, MECTF has netted a total of 312 arrests and removed more than 31 children from danger across the state because of police intervention.
“We were proud to participate with the WSP MECTF and the other public safety partners in this very important operation focused on keeping children safe from those who prey on them in our communities,” said Lewis County Sheriff Robert Snaza. “Dedicated partnerships are what make operations such as these a success”
MECTF’s primary mission during the operation is to proactively target those persons involved in child abuse and child exploitation via the Internet.
“The online world’s ability to connect us all has proven to be invaluable over these past few years, yet, it also provides an avenue for criminals to reach into our homes, and more worrisome, our children, in ways we previously never imagined,” said WSP Chief John Batiste. “This horrific reality only enhances the need for these kinds of proactive investigations by law enforcement to combat these terrible crimes.
“There is nothing more important than safeguarding and protecting our community’s most innocent and vulnerable: our children.”
Primary crimes investigated are:
- RCW 9A.44.073 – Rape of a child in the first-degree – attempt
- RCW 9A.44.076 – Rape of a child in the second degree – attempt
- RCW 9.68A.090 – Communication with a minor for immoral purposes
- RCW 9.68A.040 – Sexual Exploitation of a minor
The names of the individuals taken into custody during the operation were:
- Gillette, Michael A., 31, Chehalis
- Hinchliffe, Justin, 43, Olympia
- Greatreaks, Gerry G., 50, Vancouver
- Case, Zachary, 21, Belfair
- Cirlo-Hernandez, Adis Lao, 23, Centralia
- Tranquilino, Leonardo, 31, Centralia
- Clark, Tyler D., 23, Chehalis
- Rigby, Wayne A.,72, Shelton
- Clark, Douglas R., 45, Rochester
- Morrison, Robert E., 65, Kelso
- Nolasco, Antonio T., 36, Shelton
- Fernandez, Mario A.,33, Napavine
Anyone with information related to the suspects listed, or information leading to the identity of victims potentially involved in these cases, please contact METCF at [email protected]
The collaborative effort involving more than 60 dedicated law enforcement officers, agents, and staff led to the success of this operation. Those agencies involved include:
- Chehalis Police Department
- Federal Bureau of Investigation
- Homeland Security Investigations
- Lewis County Prosecutor’s Office
- Lewis County Sheriff’s Office
- Longview Police Department
- Othello Police Department
- State Department of Corrections
- Tacoma Police Department
- Spokane Police Department
- Washington State Patrol