Sex offender accused of posing as teen online to lure girl for sex

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Rennard Cawkwell

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ESCONDIDO, Calif. — A 47-year-old registered sex offender was back behind bars Wednesday for allegedly posing as a teenage boy online, carrying on sexually explicit conversations with a 16-year-old girl and showing up at her Escondido home one day after his parole ended.

Rennard Cawkwell of Oceanside was booked into jail Tuesday — his 47th birthday — on suspicion of several felonies related to his online exchanges with the teen, including luring a minor for sex and sending harmful material to a minor, according to Escondido police and jail records.

“The 16-year-old victim in this case believed that she was communicating online with a 17-year-old male,” Escondido police Lt. Ed Varso said. “What the victim did not know was that the `17-year-old’ that she was communicating with was actually a 46-year-old registered sex offender on active GPS monitored parole, Rennard Cawkwell.”

Varso said Cawkwell was released from parole and GPS monitoring late last month. He allegedly showed up at the girl’s home the day after, but members of her family and a neighbor thwarted the attempt to meet and called police.

Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce detectives then launched an investigation, which culminated in Cawkwell’s arrest.

“Rennard Cawkwell’s aggressive behavior and status as a registered sex offender demonstrate that he posed an immediate threat to young girls,” Varso said.

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