Municipal staffer involved in alleged inappropriate texts, say B.C. ‘creep catcher’

Bob Andrews is on leave from his position with the Township of Langley

A senior staffer at Langley Township was videotaped by a “creep catcher” organization in Surrey after allegedly engaging in inappropriate online conversations with someone he thought was an underage teen girl.

The Safe Child Coalition, formerly known as Surrey Creep Catchers (SCC), videotaped a conversation with Bob Andrews, the economic development coordinator at the Township.

On the video, Andrews acknowledges that he had a series of online conversations with someone he thought was a girl. Andrews says he thought she was 18.

Screen captures of text conversations, allegedly between Andrews and the girl, show them discussing her turning 14.

“I know that it was a stupid thing to do,” Andrews says on the video, posted on the SCC website.

He said he made an appointment to meet the girl, “and then I sent a message to her and said that I wouldn’t.”

“Thursday night, I started thinking what am I doing, I shouldn’t even be doing that,” Andrews said on the video.

Ryan LaForge, head of the SCC, confirmed that he met and spoke to Andrews at Surrey’s Guildford Shopping Centre on Wednesday afternoon.

“He was there to give his side of the story as to his part in communications with a 13-year-old child – not to meet,” LaForge wrote in an email to the Langley Advance Times.

The “girl” was LaForge using an online alias, he said.

On the video, Andrews speaks for nearly half an hour to LaForge.

Surrey RCMP were unaware of a report being made to police of the incident, said spokesperson Cpl. Elenore Sturko.

LaForge said he would be sending information to the police.

Andrews is currently on leave from his job at the Township, according to Steve Scheepmaker, director of corporate administration at the Township.

“We recognize the seriousness of what has been alleged, and the Township will take steps, as appropriate, having regard for due process and in consideration of its role as an employer, the public interest, and the privacy rights of individuals,” Scheepmaker said in an email to the Advance Times.

“To our knowledge, there is no related RCMP investigation but the Township would cooperate fully if requested by the RCMP.”

The Advance Times attempted to contact Andrews by email and phone, but was unsuccessful.

The video was apparently posted Wednesday by LaForge, who founded Surrey Creep Catchers in 2016.

LaForge said in a 2016 interview that he and other SCC members pose as children online, arrange to meet adults who think they’ve been communicating with a child, and videotape the confrontations.

LaForge pleaded guilty to two counts of assault stemming from attempted “citizen’s arrests” of Creep Catcher targets in 2017, and he announced he would be pulling back from attempts to arrest people, but would not end the stings.

Some of the stings have resulted in police investigations, charges, and even convictions, including that of former Surrey RCMP officer Dario Devic, who pleaded guilty to breach of trust after a 2016 sting.

The group has drawn criticism from police and some government officials for its tactics.

Just Posted

Mounties identify woman found dead on Kelowna beach

“Our investigators do not believe criminality was involved.”

Pacific Poke bowl lovers can get a free taste at the restaurant’s ‘Grand Opening Event’

The restaurant will offer some of its specials Thursday evening at its Kelowna location

Youth Shelter Fundraiser encourages kids to play for a good cause

The fundraiser takes place April 27 at the EnergyPlex

Tribute to Kelowna’s Chinese Canadian pioneers planned

A tribute to Kelowna’s historic Chinese Canadian community got underway this weekend.

Update: RCMP confirm body found at Kelowna’s Gyro Beach

Police tape is blocking part of the beach and several RCMP officers are on scene.

Homeless activists outside Notre Dame demand ‘a roof too’

Wealthy people have donated millions to effort to rebuild cathedral after devastating fire

B.C. VIEWS: NDP’s lawyer show is turning into a horror movie

Court actions pile up over pipelines, car insurance, care aides

South Okanagan community bands together on social media after shootings

Many in Penticton have turned to social media to express their condolences

PHOTOS: Green Party Leader Elizabeth May says ‘I do’ on Earth Day

May and John Kidder got married Monday morning in Victoria

Okanagan resort seeking connnection to rail trail

Predator Ridge Resort slated to present wish for trail from resort to ORT to Vernon council

South Okanagan society looking to bring new racing event to their park

The Desert Park Exhibition Society board is looking into hosting another major event

Okanagan power outage scuttles – but not ruins – city’s mission’s Easter meals

Vernon’s Upper Room Mission will serve Easter dinner a day later due to downtown power outage

Waterway Houseboats wins $2 million for damages caused in 2012 flood

Houseboat company wins lawsuit involving Province of British Columbia, District of Sicamous

Sri Lanka invokes war-time military powers after nearly 300 killed in Easter bombings

Sri Lanka’s minister of tourism says 39 foreign tourists were killed in the Easter Sunday attacks

Most Read