Missouri mayor arrested for soliciting sex with underage girl

Allen Kauffman, 63, a small-town mayor, was jailed on charges of soliciting sex on the Internet from a police detective who acted as an underage girl. The man was arrested in a small town in the southwest of Missouri.

Kauffman thought that he was chatting with a 13-year-old girl from the Joplin area last November and December. The man was sending online messages to the disguised girl asking her for sex and nude pictures. He also asked her to have sex with another girl in front of a Webcamera so he could watch them two on his computer screen.

"He very much believed he was talking to a 13-year-old girl," Diamond Police Chief Keith Brumfield said.

Messages were left Monday with Kauffman's attorney, Mel Gilbert, who sought reduction of Kauffman's $50,000 bond. A phone message left at Kauffman's home was not returned.

A hearing was not immediately scheduled.

Allen Kauffman is mayor of Collins, a town of about 200 people in St. Clair County about 50 miles northwest of Springfield. He is married and serves as a pastor of the Temple Lot Church in Collins, Diamond police said.

Jim Murray, 69, a police detective, has conducted numerous similar investigations linked with online sex stings. He has helped to arrest 20 online pedophiles, many of them resulted in prison terms for adult men who were attracted to Murray’s online character.

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