Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey Urges Parents to Discuss Internet Safety With Their Children After ‘Scary Case’

By  //  January 19, 2024

Message from Sheriff Wayne Ivey

McGinness was arrested yesterday after Agent Stanton Wimer from our Special Victims Unit, obtained an arrest warrant for his sorry carcass for Electronic Threats to Kill, Extortion, Lewd or Lascivious Conduct, and Computer Solicitation of a Child. (BCSO Image)

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Folks, there is no better time to talk to your children about internet and social media safety than right now and yesterday’s arrest of David McGinness is a perfect example of why we need to have those tough conversations with our kids.

McGinness was arrested yesterday after Agent Stanton Wimer from our Special Victims Unit, obtained an arrest warrant for his sorry carcass for Electronic Threats to Kill, Extortion, Lewd or Lascivious Conduct, and Computer Solicitation of a Child.

This case is just plain scary as it started when McGinness engaged in conversation with a juvenile victim on Snapchat after viewing a photograph that was posted publicly by the victim. McGinness and the victim who is only 14, talked for a short period of time, until the victim learned the age of McGinness who is 20 years old.

Once learning his age, the victim stopped replying to him and a few months later McGinness re-engaged the victim demanding nude photographs.

When the victim refused to send the photographs McGinness began to make absolutely vile threats to rape and kill the victim and the victim’s family members.

McGinness went as far as to tell the victim he knew where they lived and would be there within an hour if the victim didn’t comply.

McGinness demonstrated that he actually knew the victim’s address because the victim’s location services were turned on for the “Snap Map” allowing them to see where the victim was.

While in this instance, I am so grateful for the victim reporting to the parents what was taking place and for the swift actions of our Agents and Deputies, as things could have turned out so much worse.

That’s why I always tell parents that there is no better time than right now to talk with their children about internet and social media safety.

As parents, we want to allow our children to enjoy life but we also want to do everything possible to keep them safe, so if you allow your children to use social media or things connected to the internet, please routinely check all of the parental controls, privacy settings, and any other measures possible, to make sure that people like McGinness can’t get to them.

Always remember…monitoring everything they do is not an invasion of their privacy, it’s just simply keeping them safe.

On a bright note, McGinness is now safely behind bars in Indian River County where he was arrested on our warrant even though he pinky promised he wasn’t going to actually hurt anyone.

His total bond is $76,000 and he will soon find his way to “Ivey’s Iron Bar Lodge” where I’m sure he will encounter a whole different kind of social media interaction with his new cellmates and friends.

– Sheriff Wayne Ivey