THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF TEXAS
Ken Paxton

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

College Station Sex Predator Who Used Myspace.Com to Target Young Teen Sentenced to Seven-Year Prison Term

COLLEGE STATION A College Station sex predator who used MySpace.com to sexually solicit someone he believed to be a 14-year-old girl today received a seven-year prison sentence. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott's Cyber Crimes Unit investigated and prosecuted Guadalupe Wally DeLaGarza, 27, for using the Internet to prey on children.

DeLaGarza was arrested in July 2006 when he arrived in Shenandoah with a handgun, rope restraints, condoms, and a digital camera to meet and sexually assault the young teen he targeted on the popular social networking Web site. The online profile actually belonged to an undercover Cyber Crimes Unit investigator.

This dangerous sex predator used MySpace.com in an attempt to meet and sexually assault a 14-year-old girl, Attorney General Abbott said. Though this criminal is now behind bars, parents must stay vigilant and teach their children to safely use the Internet. We are grateful to the Shenandoah Police Department and the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office for working closely with the Cyber Crimes Unit to protect Texas children.

DeLaGarza pleaded guilty to attempted sexual performance by a child, a third-degree felony. Upon release, he will be required to register as a sex offender for 10 years. At the time of his arrest, DeLaGarza indicated he was a graduate student at Texas A&M University.

Cyber Crimes Unit investigators and Shenandoah Police Department officers arrested DeLaGarza during a joint undercover operation that yielded three other arrests of online sex predators. Former church maintenance worker William Noel Shrum, 26, of The Woodlands, and Calvin Hoddy Hannah, Jr., 52, of Owasso, Okla., were both sentenced to four-year prison terms. Robert Wayne Ramirez, 41, of Needville, received a five-year prison sentenced after he used a laptop computer at a Houston truck stop to chat online with an undercover investigator before arriving in Shenandoah. Assistant Attorney General Angela Goodwin prosecuted the four cases.

Attorney General Abbott has earned a national reputation for arresting and prosecuting child predators. Since 2003, the Cyber Crimes Unit and Fugitive Unit have arrested more than 600 sex predators. Prosecutors also have obtained convictions against more than 70 men on child pornography charges. For more information, contact the Office of the Attorney General at (800) 252-8011 or visit the Attorney General's Web site at www.texasattorneygeneral.gov.