• FBI still looking for 250 'sextortion' victims of St. Johns man

    By: Catherine Varnum


    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Federal Bureau of Investigation says it’s the largest 'sextortion' case ever prosecuted and the man convicted was right here in Northeast Florida. 

    FBI Agent Deb McCarley said a St. Johns County man was targeting girls as young as 13 years old for years, asking them for sexually explicit photos and videos. His name is Lucas Chansler.

    "He pretended to be a young boy the same age," said McCarley. "He befriended them, joined their Myspace, Facebook trying to get to know them."

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    Court documents Action News found show he had 350 victims, and some 80,000 pictures and videos on his computer. He used different names to lure the children in and different routing addresses to try to hide from police. The problem is the FBI has only identified a little more than 100 victims, leaving some still unknown. 

    It's the reason one mom says she pays close attention to what her kids do online.

    "They say I'm over protective. I don't consider it over protective," said Stacy Pendarvis, program director with the Monique Burr Foundation. She goes into local classrooms and warns kids about people like Chansler. "Going into schools is the best way to educate students," said Pendarvis.

    McCarley said it's also up to parents to know what's going on.

    "If someone asks them for these, they probably don't have the best interest in mind," said McCarley.

    Chansler is now serving a 105-year prison sentence.

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