Operation Chicken Hawk catches six potential predators

ROW 1 L-R: Alfonso Manuel Garcia, age 26; Richard Barraza, age 49; Juan Hector Martinez III,...
ROW 1 L-R: Alfonso Manuel Garcia, age 26; Richard Barraza, age 49; Juan Hector Martinez III, age 28.<br />ROW 2 L-R: Anthony Javier Lozano, age 35; Humberto Carrera, age 27; Robert David Griffith, age 56.(KGNS)
Published: Oct. 21, 2019 at 10:16 PM CDT
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Local law enforcement worked undercover in a sting operation, much like the plot of the famous television show “To Catch a Predator,” in order to get to potential sexual predators before they get to their victims.

Technology and social media can be a helpful tool for adults and sometimes even children, but it can also be a dangerous place that everyone needs to be cautious of.

Anthony Lozano, age 35, was caught trying to reel in a minor for his own sexual deviance on September 26th. He is just one of six men arrested during the sting operation, called "Chicken Hawk."

Alaniz said in every community, there are child predators using technology and social media as their hunting ground.

"These suspects were made aware that they were speaking to a minor, but it didn't make a difference. They kept going and kept talking to who they believe was a minor."

However during the operation, Alaniz says he noticed something interesting about these would-be predators and the victims they were seeking out.

"The predators were just as interested in minor males and minor females, and with minor males it seems like they were less careful and very willing to seek out a child."

Children's Advocacy Center executive director Dr. Severita Sanchez says she was very pleased to see some action being taken towards these people.

"This is the best thing that could have happened to our community,” said Dr. Sanchez.

She hopes this open the community’s eyes to the dangers, not only in the streets, but in the digital world.

"Continuously be monitoring your child, continuously be looking at seeing what is going on on their phone."

The six men arrested during Operation "Chicken Hawk" will be facing various felony criminal misdemeanor charges.

The District Attorney's Office received help from the Webb County Sheriff's Office, the County Attorney, Constables Precinct Two, Department of Homeland Security and a non-profit organization called "Veterans 4 Child Rescue."