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Cottage Grove man charged with prostitution of a minor after attempted meeting in Hastings

A Cottage Grove man is charged with underage prostitution after authorities say he answered an online ad and agreed to meet a 15-year-old girl for a sex act.

Kerry Joe Mausolf, 49, is charged with prostitution of a minor. He returns to Washington County District Court July 13 for an omnibus hearing in the felony case.

According to the criminal complaint:

As part of a human trafficking detail, authorities from Hastings, Minneapolis, St. Paul and the federal Homeland Security Department posted a Craigslist ad last fall advertising a “back to school $pecial” that sought “a clean, respectful man to ‘teach’ my daughter a few anatomy lessons…”

A female undercover officer received a text message response from a suspect later identified as Mausolf. The complaint says they exchanged messages and in one message Mausolf said “the 15 thing scares me” and asked whether the girl’s mother was OK with it. The undercover officer wrote that it was “totally cool.” Mausolf was told a girl named Sara would meet him at a Hastings hotel room, and he wrote that he wanted to perform a sex act on her.

Mausolf arrived at the hotel room Sept. 10, 2015, and was arrested, police said.

In a police interview, Mausolf denied knowing he went to the hotel to have sexual contact with a 15-year-old, but didn’t dispute the content of his text messages, the complaint says.

The prostitution charge carries a maximum penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine.

Scott Wente

Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011.

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