Man Pleads Guilty: Electronic Solicitation

Man Pleads Guilty: Electronic Solicitation

A New Jersey man accused of planning a sexual liaison with a teen-age girl in a Fair Oaks hotel pleaded guilty last week to sexually soliciting a minor via computer.

He is Joseph Osso, 43, of 232 Warren Ave., Fort Lee, N.J., and Fairfax County police arrested him Sept. 9, following a sting operation conducted by detectives in the Criminal Investigations Bureau.

He appeared last Wednesday, Jan. 30, in Circuit Court, and at that time Judge Jonathan Thacher asked him if he was pleading guilty because he was, in fact, guilty of the crime as alleged. "Yes, sir," replied Osso.

Then Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Edward Nuttall presented the prosecution's evidence against him, had the case gone to trial. He said the crime occurred from July 9 through Sept. 7, 2001. Acting in an undercover capacity, Det. Barrickman of the county police Child Molestation Unit went online as a 13-year-old girl named Alex and waited, without sending messages, to be contacted.

Via AOL, he received a message from DonnaV1121, asking for Alex's age and physical description. "Donna said she was a 16-year-old girl," said Nuttall. "She told [Alex] about an older man who she wrestled with for money, and they also had conversations about sex."

He said Alex was also contacted by XJX-PonyBoy who called himself Stanley. "Others also called her, but all of them turned out to be the defendant," said Nuttall. "He said he wanted to go to a hotel with her and said he'd pay for various sex acts while she wore a bikini top and he was naked."

Knowing the girl was only 14, said Nuttall, Osso also talked about her dominating him, and he arranged for her to come to Virginia. "He said he'd pay her $500 for performing these sex acts and told her he'd bring a camera," said the prosecutor. But when Osso arrived for their tryst at a Fair Oaks hotel, Sept. 9, he was met, instead, by police.

"In his pocket was $500 in cash," said Nuttall. "He admitted to police to using all the screen names and said it didn't bother him that she was 13 when they first met."

On his client's behalf, defense attorney Dale Race noted that "the conduct [proposed by Osso] did not involve the undressing of the victim." Earlier, both attorneys had worked out a plea agreement involving suspended jail time and active probation for Osso, but Judge Thacher continued the sentencing to April 12 so he could learn more about the sentencing guidelines for this relatively new offense.