SPRING HILL, TN (WSMV) - “You don’t ever know what kind of person is going to respond to these ads,” said Spring Hill Police Lt. Justin Whitwell on Monday.
He knows the ins and outs of the two-day joint operation that drew 18 men across Tennessee and neighboring states to Spring Hill. It all starts with an online ad, eliciting sex with a minor, followed by a phone call.
“Eighteen of them took the call and came to the location looking for a 16-year-old female,” said Whitwell.
The 18 men were arrested after they came to an undisclosed Spring Hill location. One of them, Matthew Brewer, is a youth pastor at Fairfield Baptist Church in Hickman County and a chaplain with the Tennessee National Guard.
“This person is a trusted individual in their community, and he was arrested for these charges,” Whitwell said.
The Tennessee Military Department issued a release concerning Brewer's arrest:
"The Tennessee Military Department is aware of the recent arrest of a Tennessee National Guardsman and are fully supporting and assisting civil law enforcement as they conduct their investigation. The charges made in this incident do not reflect or meet the standards of the Tennessee National Guard or the Army Values."
The Fairfield Baptist Church sent News4 this statement:
“Our Fairfield Baptist Church family was shocked and saddened with the situation this past weekend involving our youth minister. We are prepared to work with law enforcement that will help us better understand all the details. / The content of what was shared with us is not aligned with our Biblical values. We met with our church family Sunday to share what little we knew, and our youth minister has been suspended indefinitely from his duties and church campus pending court proceedings. /We ask that people would pray for the Brewer family and the church family and anyone else involved as we work through what’s happened.”
The Leadership of Fairfield Baptist Church
Whitwell said several traveled from out of state.
“Two individuals from Louisiana,” said Whitwell. “One of them was on business. He actually drove five hours just to get to Spring Hill to answer to that ad.”
“The crime continues to flourish,” said Margie Quin, CEO of End Slavery Tennessee and a former TBI special agent who organized sting operations.
“I think when we first started running these operations, we were surprised. I don’t think we’re surprised anymore,” said Quin. “I think these individuals whose preference is children are going to put themselves in a position in life to have access to children.”
Spring Hill Police said it has done a few operations like this in years past. Last year the department arrested around 15 men and they hope to continue to do them annually.
According to a new state law that went into effect July 1, all 18 men will have to serve a full sentence. There is no chance for early parole or release.
The 18 men were arrested and booked them into the Maury County Jail.
The following men were arrested in the undercover operation:
- Georgie George (DOB 11/26/95), Clarksville, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Marvin Sparkman (DOB 1/26/92), Columbia, TN: Solicitation of a Minor
- Steven McCanless (DOB 1/16/95), Culleoka, TN: Solicitation of a Minor
- Ketankumar Patel (DOB 4/5/68), Columbia, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Ivan Ashley (DOB 8/20/71), Dania, FL: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- David Christopher May (DOB 9/25/94), Fayetteville, TN: Solicitation of a Minor
- Andrew Myung Kim (DOB 12/2/82), Franklin, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Bryce Lawson (DOB 7/2/97), Charles, LA: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Jeremiah McSpaddin (DOB 1/31/85), Spring Hill, TN: Solicitation of a Minor
- Brian Mitchell (DOB 8/5/70), Thompson’s Station, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Nabi Rahman (DOB 3/5/88), Nashville, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Patrick Harris (DOB 4/9/89), Murfreesboro, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Matthew Brewer (DOB 2/27/74), Centerville, TN: Solicitation of a Minor
- Suleiman Musa Osman (DOB 1/1/83), Chattanooga, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Juan Gabriel Hernandez Eufracio (DOB 8/29/84), Huntsville, AL: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Pablo Godines Cervantes (DOB 5/17/70), Columbia, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Haojie Wang (DOB 2/25/89), Brentwood, TN: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
- Luis Diaz-Mendez (DOB 4/17/94), Baton Rouge, LA: Patronizing Prostitution from a Minor
The TBI says their investigation is ongoing with additional charges pending.