Police warn of online predators after woman allegedly poses as teen for sexPosted: Updated:
Glendale -- Police are encouraging parents to communicate with their children and monitor their Internet activity after a 23-year-old woman allegedly posed as a teen online to lure minors for sex.
Anna Rose Areola-Hernandez was arrested after a 13-year-old boy's mother reported to police that the woman had sex with her son.
She told police the woman had given her son a sexually transmitted disease and claimed to be pregnant with his child.
Police say Areola-Hernandez posed as a 15-year-old online and used several social media and texting applications to contact minors.
"We see these types of things more and more," said Glendale police spokesman Officer Tracey Breeden. "Predators are using social media platforms to reach out and communicate with young people."
Areola-Hernandez and the boy reportedly dated for a few months and had sex several times.
The boy told police that Areola-Hernandez said she wanted a sexual relationship immediately after they started dating.
"It’s a tough subject, but I think all children should be aware that there are pedophiles out there," Valley resident Sam Vasser said.
Police said Areola-Hernandez went by “Tiny Hernandez” and “Ana Hernandez” on social media, and told between 10 and 20 boys that she was a teen.
"We know that social media has no boundaries, so there could be other victims outside of the city of Glendale, which is why it's important that we get this message out there," Breeden said. "Look at their Facebook. Look at their social media. Is there any inappropriate communication? Are they receiving any inappropriate pictures?"
She also encouraged parents to watch their children for odd behavior like using the Internet late at night, closing the computer when someone walks by, or hiding what's on their phones.
"This internet stuff has gotten crazy," said Valerie Amarillas, who is the mother of a preteen
She has an 11-year-old son but has never imagined anything like this happening to him.
"He's barely getting into girls, talking to girls. I guess that's something I'll have to talk to him about," she said.
Elizabeth Logan said she doesn't let any of her children use the Internet.
"There are too many predators out there. It's just unsafe," she said.
Areola-Hernandez is facing charges of sexual conduct with a minor, molestation of a child, unlawful age misrepresentation, and posing as an adult for sexual conduct with a minor.
She is being held without bond because of the nature of the charges.