FORT PIERCE, Fla. — A federal district judge in Fort Pierce sentenced a Jensen Beach man to 10 years in prison for attempted online enticement of a minor.
According to the United States Department of Justice (DOJ), Zachary S. Spiegel, 38, communicated online and by text message with someone he believed was a 14-year-old girl named "Shayla" for several weeks in January.
In reality, Shayla was a 16-year-old boy who was trying to identify child predators in South Florida.
On January 9, Spiegel attempted to persuade Shayla to meet him in the parking lot of a Fort Pierce shopping plaza for sex in his car.
According to the DOJ, Spiegel sent Shayla graphic depictions of the sex acts he would perform on her, as well of nude photos of is crotch.
They agreed on a time and place to meet, but Spiegel did not make it. He later explained to Shayla that he got pulled over for speeding on the way there and decided to return home.
After this incident, the 16-year-old boy contacted law enforcement.
Spiegel kept communicating with the person he believed to be 14-year-old Shayla and continued to make sexually explicit comments, send her more photos of his face and naked crotch, and talked about meeting her in person.
A law enforcement investigation led officers to Spiegel. They executed a search warrant at his Jensen Beach home on January 20. Officers located his cellular phone which he used to communicate with Shayla.
Spiegel was sentenced on Wednesday, June 22, 2022.