A stepfather helped police catch a man accused of trying to meet a 12-year-old boy in a northwest Atlanta gas station shower stall.
The boy’s stepfather told Channel 2 Action News that incidents leading to the encounter started Friday when his stepson got a few texts via the instant messaging app KIK.
Atlanta police officers working the case said when the boy’s stepfather — who was pretending to be the child — opened the messages, he saw sexually inappropriate photos allegedly sent by Brian Grabia, 35.
“So I started texting the guy and told him ‘I’m 12. Do you have a problem with that?’ He says, ‘Well I thought you were 18, but that’s no problem.’” the stepfather said.
He arranged a meeting with Grabia at an Atlanta Petro station on Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway then called police to make them aware of the sting, according to Channel 2 Action News.
When Grabia got to the shower stall at the gas station, it wasn’t the boy waiting for him, the stepfather said.
“He reached in to start taking his clothes off, reaching towards his stomach. At that point, I jumped out of the shower and it all went down from there,” the stepfather said.
Police officers arrested Grabia.
“I was just really angry. I wanted to get this guy,” the stepfather said. “It could be someone else’s kids.”
Investigators said they recovered two cellphones and drugs in the suspect’s car.
Grabia faces child molestation charges.
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.