HOUSTON -- A man from Florida posed as a girl on Facebook and would friend young girls. He would convince them to send them nude photos of themselves, and investigators say there are hundreds of victims out there that have not come forward.
I wanted to show my face because I wanted to let all the girls, victims know that it can happen to anybody, said 13-year-old Lacie.
KHOU 11 News sat down with the mother and daughter. They were adamant about showing their faces during our interview. Police said 34-year-old Melvin Bridgers befriended hundreds of girls.
He pretended like he was a girl. Brianna Benson. He would send me messages and one day he asked for pictures, said Lacie.
Bridgers would send Facebook messages to the girls and try to make them feel comfortable.
They were just, Hey, what are you doing? How is your day, said Lacie.
The suspect had a photo of the 15-year-old girl he pretended to be without any clothes on, said Detective David Nettles with Houston Metro Internet Crimes Against Children. Not just one, many.
He was like, Can you send me some of this, and so I did, said Lacie. Why? I don't know. It was one of those dumb teen moments.
Lacie said it went further. He wanted naked photos of her 7-year-old sister.
One day, me and my sister were watching The Vampire Diaries, said Lacie. He said send some pictures of your little sister, and I was like no. He was like send some of her while she is sleeping.
This man was pretty tricky, he would say, delete all the messages so that no one would see, said Nettles.
Lacie's mother Laura said she has been in and out of the hospital with a medical condition. She knew something wasn't right.
Withdrawn and she wasn't as open, she didn't want to do things with me, said Laura. What 12-year-old doesn't want to go shopping with me? I was hurt, angry, I felt that my job as a mother, I felt like I failed. It makes me want to throw up.
The mother and daughter want everyone to hear their story. They want others to come forward and learn from what happened to them.