CHRIS HANSEN (VO): Like lone wanderers to stunning mountainsides, they just keep coming. Thanks for joining us, I’m Chris Hansen. Its been three years since we started our series of investigative reports on online sexual predators. Tonight is Investigation # 9, this time we’ve set up our sting in a rented cottage in rural Lancaster, England.
CHRIS HANSEN: (enters) Have a seat over there. Are you surprised to see me?
SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE: Yes, quite. Now what is all of this about?
CHRIS HANSEN: “By woman wailing for her demon-lover/And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething/As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing/A mighty fountain momentarily was forced”. Did you write this?
COLERIDGE: Yes, I believe I did.
CHRIS HANSEN: Very erotic. Is this an appropriate thing to be saying to a twelve-year old girl?
COLERIDGE: No. Who are you?
CHRIS HANSEN: We’ll get to that in a minute. Now, it’s better if you don’t lie. I have the manuscripts of your online conversation right here. What was your plan for this evening?
COLERIDGE: My plan? Well I was just out for an evening stroll to bask in nature’s inglorious immensity – I love nature – and I happened across an empty door which led to this dwelling where a young lady did appear to me undressed…
CHRIS HANSEN: And you just happened to stroll into an empty house, just by accident?
COLERIDGE: What is going on here?
CHRIS HANSEN: Were you planning on marrying this girl?
COLERIDGE: No! We were just going to stroll, maybe write each other letters. I promise this to be the extent of my intention.
CHRIS HANSEN So you are trying to tell me that you traveled eight miles by horse and carriage just to “stroll” with a twelve year old girl.
COLERIDGE: I swear! (breaks down in tears)
CHRIS HANSEN: Tell me, what exactly is “Kubla Khan”?
COLERIDGE: …the balls. my balls. stately pleasure domes. oh god, i’m so sorry. my balls. oh god…
Shortly after predator #2 has entered the house, the scantily clad decoy, whose frock has been pulled up to reveal her overstockings. Chris Hansen appears from behind a magic lantern projection and approaches the predator.
GOETHE: Who are you? Where’s Margaret?
CHRIS HANSEN: Margaret’s upstairs, have a seat. What’s that you have in your hand, a lovely casket filled with precious jewels?
CHRIS HANSEN: Put it on the table. Tell me, what are you doing here?
GOETHE: We were just talking.
CHRIS HANSEN: What were you talking about?
GOETHE: Uh, you know, the futility of engaging oneself in scholarly pursuits…um, man’s, uh, insatiable longing for what can never be achieved, all the usual … stuff.
CHRIS HANSEN: Are you “Faust”?
CHRIS HANSEN: Faust: “Once glance from you. One word, gives far more pleasure than all the wisdom of the world.” Faust:”An angel if she be as you“. It just goes on and on like this: “Nay! Do not tremble, love! Let this hand-pressure, let this glance reveal Feelings, all power of speech above; To give oneself up wholly and to feel A joy that must eternal prove!”
CHRIS HANSEN: Did you hold her hand?
CHRIS HANSEN: Did you ask her if you could call her “Gretchen”?
GOETHE: Yes…what’s going on here? Who are you?
CHRIS HANSEN: I’m Chris Hansen from Dateline NBC’s “To Catch a Predator”. How old did you think this “Gretchen” was?
CHRIS HANSEN: Try again.
CHRIS HANSEN: No use lying, I have the manuscripts right here. “Faust: She’s past fourteen”. Fourteen years old. And how old are you?
CHRIS HANSEN: Whats wrong with you? Why can’t you hold hands with girls your own age?
GOETHE: (sobbing) They’re all dead.
CHRIS HANSEN (VO):
Meet Englishman Percy Bysshe Shelley. Using the screenname Bucksshot78 Shelley chatted with a decoy who told him she was 13. Shelley asks her about her breast size, and insist that she compare them to the vastness of mountains. He says he can make her “sing like a skylark” and promises to “unbind her Prometheus” which we can only assume is a promise to take her virginity.
DECOY: Come on in, I’m just going upstairs for a second. Did you bring the condoms?
CHRIS HANSEN:(enters) Well hello there, have a seat. Tell me, what was your plan for the evening?
SHELLEY: I don’t know…just friendship.
CHRIS HANSEN: That didn’t make sense.
SHELLEY: She’s just a friend.
CHRIS HANSEN: How did you meet this friend?
SHELLEY: Oh I don’t know, we were just talking online and stuff. I’m sorry, can I ask you something? Am I going to be in trouble?
CHRIS HANSEN: Well thats really not up to me. Were you going to perform oral sex on this young girl?
CHRIS HANSEN: Unfortunately for you, I’ve got the chatlog right here, so you should probably start telling the truth. Did you write: “Teach me half the gladness/ that thy brain must know,/ Such harmonious madness/ from my lips would flow”. Is that supposed to be romantic?
SHELLEY: Alright, I’m not going to lie to you. I have a problem. I’m a really lonely guy. I can’t help it.
CHRIS HANSEN: Why children? Whats wrong with girls your own age?
SHELLEY: Girls my age just aren’t interested in poetry. You hit thirty and the rushing torrents, vast caves, limitless woodlands and unfathomable peaks all just amounts to empty promises. To a child it all seems so glorious and whimsical. But once you’ve had your heart broken a few times you aren’t looking for a guy who can love you with the boundless ferocity of an everlasting river or the sublime eternity of an infinite sky , you really just want someone who pays the bills.
You start to see the poems as the lies that they really are: towering trees and fully bloomed flowers are just over-compensation for the withered and flaccid truth. Gushing rivers are no recompense for a flow that barely amounts to a dried stream. Its different with children. They’re not bitter. They’re still enchanted by the magic and majesty of my mountains. I guess I was just searching for an innocence that is lost irretrievably, you might say preying on an innocence lost irretrievably. I wanted to fuck an innocence lost irretrievably. But its not right, I know this now.
CHRIS HANSEN: Yeah, sure buddy. We hear that every time. The story is getting hard to believe.
SHELLEY: You know, in a way I think I wanted this. I think my coming here was my way of seeking help.
VO: William Wordsworth, who goes by the screenname “Sw0rdsw0rth69” has been chatting online with our decoy who is posing as a thirteen year old boy named Michael. For weeks, Wordsworth has been e-mailing our decoy pictures of his genitals. The pictures become stranger everyday, his genitals painted different colours or arranged in different allegorical positions, speech bubbles photoshopped overtop of the pictures with captions such as “C U s00n?”
Here is a transcript of an earlier conversation he had with our decoy.
Sw0rdsW0rth69: i hop my c0ck isnt 2 big 4 u lol
lilmikeyman: how big is it? lol
Sw0rdsW0rth69: i bet it woud look bigger in yur mouth lol
SwordsWorth69: wanna fuck u wit sWords
According to Perverted Justice, William Wordsworth has had fourteen sexual conversations with our decoys during our mid-nineteenth century Lake District investigation. He is noted for his strange fetish, where he demands that the young boy dress up like his own father. Wordsworth, who has already made five separate appearances on our show, spotted our cameras immediately and started to make a run for it. But that did not stop the LDPD from bringing him to justice.
The officers surround him as he is running away. He dodges two officers and then tries to wear them out by running in circles.
WORDSWORTH: Awww (expletive removed)!
OFFICER: Stand still!
WORDSWORTH: Y’all ain’t never gun catch me! I’m too fast for y’all! Like a cheetah-a lightning cheetah!
OFFICER: Once again, we advise you to stand still.
WORDSWORTH: I wasn’t (expletive removed) doin anything I swear!
OFFICER: Sir, get down on the ground.
WORDSWORTH: I never even (expletive removed) didn’t do anything yet!
OFFICER: Get down on the ground!
WORDSWORTH: We was just talking!
OFFICER: This is the last warning.
WORDSWORTH : I’M GUNNA (expletive removed) KILL YOU!
Wordsworth, running with increased speed, balls his hands into fists and starts to charge the officers. Luckily, he is tasered before making contact.