Updated: Friday, 11 Jan 2013, 10:51 PM EST
Published : Friday, 11 Jan 2013, 10:51 PM EST
AVON, Conn. (WTNH) -- Two men have been arrested in two days after talking to underage girls online. Police were able to stop one of the men before he actually met the young girl, but how can you protect your child from online predators?
It has happened twice in the past 24 hours in Avon. First it was Joseph Stinnett. Police say they arrested him after he had a sexually explicit, unlawful chat with a 15-year-old girl. Police say they stopped him before he could carry out his plan to drive to Avon and meet the girl for sex.
Just one day later, a second, unrelated case. Police arrested Israel Gomez after meeting the girl online. Police say they met and had a sexual relationship. He has been charged with sex assault in the second degree and risk of injury to a minor.
Police say Gomez got in his car, left Hartford and drove to Avon to pick up the 14-year-old girl. He allegedly took the girl to a parking lot and sexually assaulted her there. Police say they always lecture about stranger danger and don't get in the car with a stranger but these two met on Facebook and they warn parents to know what their kids are doing.
"Our young teens have no idea of the dangers that are out there," said Marialice Curran.
Curran is a professor at the University of St. Joseph. She teaches classes on digital citizenship.
"Instagram. Can we talk about Instagram for a second 'cause kids are really crazy about Instagram. It has coordinates of pictures that you take and so you post the picture, anybody can go and see the latitude and longitude," said Curran.
Curran says the internet is a predator's playground. She says it's important for parents to be just as computer saavy as their teens so they can spot problems. She says always use the privacy settings on Facebook and adjust them to your personal needs and be careful because all of your photographs can be taken from you.
"I can right click that and I can own it in my permanent file and I can do whatever I want with it. I can post it on a blog," said Curran.