A California police officer has been charged after a college student disguised himself as an underage girl looking for a hookup on Tinder using a Snapchat filter.
The student, who was identified only as Ethan, said he created the profile because he had a friend who’d been molested as a child, and he wanted to possibly uncover any pedophiles on the app, NBC Boston reported.
Using Snapchat’s gender-switch filter, Ethan disguised himself as a 16-year old girl. In May, one man allegedly messaged him, San Mateo Officer Robert Davies, according to police.
San Jose police arrested Davies, 40, last week for communicating with a minor with the intention of engaging in sexual activity. Ethan reportedly researched Davies after their messaging, which took place on Tinder, Kik Messenger and Snapchat, and determined he was a police officer.
Police said Davies has allegedly admitted to communicating with a minor.
He is currently on paid administrative leave with the San Mateo Police Department pending the outcome of an investigation, authorities said.
"This alleged conduct, if true, is in no way a reflection of all that we stand for as a Department, and is an affront to the tenets of our department and our profession as a whole," San Mateo Police Chief Susan Manheimer said in a statement.
"As San Mateo police officers, we have sworn an oath to serve and protect our communities. I can assure you that we remain steadfast to this commitment to serving our community with 'Professionalism, Integrity, and Excellence."