A retired law enforcement agent was arrested Monday on suspicion of using a phony social media profile to bait children and for allegedly possessing child pornography, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
Retired California Highway Patrol Officer Edward John Hofer, 53, is expected to be charged with two counts each of sending harmful matter to a minor, possession of child pornography and contact with a minor for sexual offense.
Hofer allegedly posed as a teenage girl on the social networking site Tagged.com, on which he met an 11-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl.
Initially created as a networking site for teens, Tagged.com was opened to users 13 and older in 2006. To protect its younger viewers from potential predators, the site restricts contact between adults and members under age 18, according to the site's privacy statement.
Hofer’s last assignment with the agency was in the Torrance area. He retired from the CHP in 2012.
Prosecutors have asked that Hofer’s bail be set at $90,000. He could be arraigned as early as Tuesday.
If convicted on all six counts, the former officer faces a maximum sentence of six years, four months in state prison.