By DAVID WYLIE
A Kamloops sheriff is now facing four criminal charges after he was caught up in a Creep Hunters' sting.
The Criminal Justice Branch confirmed Tuesday former Kamloops deputy sheriff Kevin Johnston has been charged with three counts of communicating with a person believed to be underage for the purpose of facilitating a sexual offence and one count of invitation to sexual touching.
The allegations are said to have happened between Aug. 8 and Aug. 27 at or near Kamloops and Kelowna.
The charges stem from a vigilante group's sting operation.
Creep Hunters said they posted an ad on Craigslist, claiming to be a 14-year-old girl.
A man contacted the group and engaged in conversation that turned sexual in nature. In the conversation, he sent pictures of a man in a sheriff's uniform and said it was him.
He also sent naked pictures of himself. At one point, before he was confronted, the man appears to have regretted his previous texts.
“I should not have been sending you any naked pics,” he wrote. “The other ones are OK, but I do not want you to think I was taking advantage of you due to your age.”
The criminal justice branch said special prosecutor was appointed in the case because Johnston was an employee of the Ministry of Justice and Attorney General at the time.
"The appointment of a special prosecutor is intended to avoid any potential for real or perceived improper influence in the administration of criminal justice," said a news release.
Johnston makes his first appearance in Kelowna provincial court Oct. 20.