MT. VERNON, IL (KFVS) - A Mt. Vernon, Illinois man has been arrested and is facing charges after allegedly trying to meet a minor for sexual conduct.
Troy police have announced the arrest of Kevin W. Battas, 25, of Mt. Vernon, for indecent solicitation of a child and grooming.
The charges stem from and investigation conducted by the Troy Police Department during the past month.
During the course of the investigation it was determined that Battas met the child using Whisper, an anonymous social media app.
The investigation revealed that Battas committed indecent solicitation of a child because he knowingly discussed an act of sexual conduct with a minor and offered to perform sexual acts upon the minor.
The solicitation of the minor was done using a smart phone or similar device so Battas was also charged with grooming.
"Smart phones and social media apps have created new avenues for predators to contact and solicit children," stated Mt. Vernon Police Chief Brad Parsons. "As parents we need to be aware of what our children are doing on their phones and who they are communicating with. We're lucky that in this case we were able to intervene before any of the acts could be carried out."
Battas, a Mt. Vernon high school math teacher, was taken into custody Wednesday evening and was being held at the Madison County Jail on a $150,000 bond.
The district learned of the incidient at 10 a.m. on Thursday.
He is on paid leave from the school, pending an internal school investigation, and is not allowed on school property.
There is no indication any children in the Jefferson County area having been involved with Battas.
However, police encourage the public to contact them or Mt. Vernon High School if there are any concerns of inappropriate behavior by Battas.