A North Arlington man has been arrested and charged with sexual assault, endangering the welfare of a child and luring a minor, Essex County Prosecutor Theodore N. Stephens II and Belleville Police Chief Mark Minichini said jointly.
Bradley O’Dell, 57, was taken into custody Friday, Oct. 8, without incident.
The victim, a 13-year-old Belleville resident, reported encountering the defendant on an online dating app. After exchanging messages with the child online, the defendant arranged for the juvenile victim to meet him in person at which point, the defendant allegedly sexually assaulted the victim. It is also alleged the sexual assaults occurred on three separate occasions over the course of September — reportedly in Belleville, Lyndhurst and Nutley.
O’Dell was charged following an investigation by the Belleville Police Department.
“This case highlights how important it is for parents to play an active role in their children’s online behavior and to monitor usage of social media,” Stephens said.
The ECPO asks anyone who may have additional information on this case contact the Special Victims Unit at (973) 753-1130.
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