Police: firefighter tried to solicit minor for sex

March 3, 2020 GMT

SCITUATE, R.I. (AP) — A Massachusetts firefighter faces multiple counts of sexual exploitation of a child, Rhode Island State Police said Tuesday.

Edward Mathias, 40, of Fall River, was arrested Tuesday after state police say he arranged to meet a person he thought was a 14-year-old Rhode Island girl in order to engage in sexual activity.

State police say Mathias, a ten-year veteran of the Fall River Fire Department, faces one count of indecent solicitation of a child and one count of electronically disseminating indecent material to a minor.

He was appeared in District Court Tuesday but didn’t have to enter a plea, The Providence Journal reports.

He was released pending his next court date with the condition that he has no contact with children and has restricted use of the internet. It couldn’t be immediately determined if Mathias has a lawyer.

Fall River Fire Chief John Lynch told the Journal that Mathias has been placed on paid administrative leave, but the department will pursue unpaid leave as it conducts its own internal investigation.