Washington County Sheriff’s Office Shares Social Media Safety Tips

Man uses Monkey social media app to meet minor
Man uses Monkey social media app to meet minor(WTAP News)
Published: Apr. 28, 2021 at 5:39 PM EDT
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MARIETTA, O.H. (WTAP) - Ever hear of the social media app Monkey? If not, you’re not alone.

Washington County detective Scott Smeeks never hear of it either before the department arrested and charged a New Jersey man who used Monkey to meet a 13-year-old girl.

Detective Smeeks and the rest of the department learned that monkey is a video-sharing app that allows people to have video calls with others all over the world.

In this specific case, Elijah Reid-Williams, the man charged with 5 counts of sex-related charges allegedly lied to the victim about his age on Monkey and met her several times.

Detective Smeeks says cases like this are not new to the area. There have been three other cases this year where an adult was arrested for communicating with a minor on social media to solicit sex. He says he advises kids to only communicate with people they already know on social media.

“Always be wary of who you’re talking to. It’s always safer to talk amongst the people that you know. I know it’s fun for them to meet new people and have those social chats and all that but once it gets to the point where it crosses the line that’s where it becomes dangerous. That’s where someone could get hurt, raped, or kidnapped, or even worse,” Smeeks said.

As of now, the Washington County Sheriff’s department does not have enough staff to create a specific department dedicated to these types of cases.

Smeeks says he advises parents to monitor their children’s phones, learn more about certain apps before allowing children to use them, and only have children communicate with people they know on social media.

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