On Monday, April 24, 2017, Fairview Heights Police obtained a warrant of arrest, charging:
Joseph D Gaither
M/W, 21 Years of Age
10006 Old Lincoln Trail
Fairview Heights, IL 62208
With Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse and Travelling to Meet a Minor, which are both felonies under Illinois law.
Gaither was identified as a suspect in January, 2017, when a 15 year old female came forward to report the relationship she and Gaither had formed from chatting on social media. It was reported that Gaither had contacted the young girl initially on Facebook and then continued communicating on the Snapchat mobile application. Knowing the girl to be 15 years old, Gaither arranged to meet with her and engaged in a sexual relationship. Although Gaither changed his Facebook profile name several times he uses the same profile picture. It is also suspected Gaither may be facing charges in other venues for this same or similar type of behavior.
Gaither is currently free after posting $5,000 cash bond.
• All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.