Ohio man arrested, charged after coming to Minnesota seeking 14-year-old he met online

An Ohio man has been arrested and charged after he allegedly traveled to Minnesota to meet up with a 14-year-old he met online.

Christian James Mackson, 29, of Dayton, Ohio, is charged with engaging in communication regarding sexual conduct with a child — solicitation.

The Pope County Sheriff’s Office says a Minnewaska Area School staff member called law enforcement about an unknown man at the middle school on Friday. Authorities then learned that Mackson had traveled to the school and left a phone at the front desk for a student.

According to a criminal complaint, Mackson and a 14-year-old boy had communicated through a gaming site and also exchanged text messages and phone calls.

Copies of the messages showed conversations regarding sexual conduct and a plan about how to disguise Mackson’s age, where he allegedly claimed to be 19.

The teen told authorities that Mackson was going to stay at the GrandStay Hotel in Glenwood and meet up with the boy. Law enforcement then went there and arrested Mackson.

He made his first court appearance on Monday and had his bail set at $250,000 without conditions, $50,000 with conditions, or $500 cash with conditions. His next appearance is set for May 13.

Authorities urged parents to stay engaged with their kids about what they’re doing online.

If convicted, Mackson could face up to five years in jail and a $10,000 fine.