ORLANDO, Fla. (KXAN) — An Austin man who police say traveled to Orlando, Fla. to meet and have sex with a 9-year-old girl ended up being arrested by undercover officers instead.
Orlando police arrested Mark Nichols, 64, on Saturday after weeks of corresponding with him via email and text messages. According to an arrest affidavit, on Aug. 25, an Orlando police detective in their Internet Crimes against Children Task Force posted an ad on a website stating they were trying to meet “experienced parents to learn new things from about raising little ones.” Police say Nichols responded via an email saying he was interested in helping along with a photo of himself.
The detective posed as the father and mother of a 9-year-old girl and when Nichols found out they had a young daughter, he “responded quickly” and stated he was “very interested” in communicating more, according to the affidavit. Over the course of a month, the detective would text Nichols posing as the father, the mother and the child.
In various text conversations, police say Nichols expressed interest in having sex with the child as well as the mother and father. The messages became increasingly explicit as the conversations continued. He indicated he was in the process of planning a trip to Orlando and wanted to meet the family, according to the affidavit.
When Nichols said he was flying to Orlando from Austin on Oct. 7, the undercover detective set up a meeting time and location.
When Nichols showed up, police immediately arrested him. He is currently in jail facing numerous charges, including solicitation of a minor and obscene communication.