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Published on February 22nd, 2013 | by Daniel R. Perlman

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Christian Mingle Date Rape Victims Sought by California Cops

Suspected rapist, Sean Patrick Banks, is accused of sexually assaulting a woman he met on ChristianMingle.com, and may have used the dating site to prey on women while he traveled across the country, California police said on Monday.

Sean Patrick Banks, 37, a former Navy sailor, used the online fake name “Rarity” to contact the alleged victim on the Christian dating site and then visited her La Mesa home, where he allegedly raped her, said police Lt. Matt Nicholass, in La Mesa, Calif. Investigators believe that he used additional aliases to contact other women on the popular website, and police hope that if there are additional victims they will recognize Banks.

Banks lives in Del Mar, Calif., and is currently unemployed but previously “travelled frequently around various spots in the U.S.” for work, widening the search for potential victims from Southern California to across the country, said Lt. Matt Nicholass.

“We’re looking to see if there are any other victims,” Nicholass told ABC News. “We’re trying to locate other victims who recognize his face because they may not know his real name is Sean.”

The chief spokeswoman for Spark Networks, which owns Christian Mingle, said her Beverly Hills-based company has contacted the La Mesa Police Department and is “willing to assist in the investigation in any way we can.”

“The safety and security of our members is of critical importance to us,” said Arielle Schechtman, director of public and Community Relations for Spark. “We take tremendous precautions to protect the safety and privacy of our community members.

“In addition to having profile review experts manually review all profile text and photos submitted by members, we have also developed several proprietary automated tools to help identify questionable profiles and to eliminate fraudulent activity in our communities.”

Cops accuse Banks of posing on the site as “Rylan Butterwood” and “Rylan Harbough.”

His alleged use of fake names complicated police efforts to track him down after a La Mesa woman accused him of rape at her home in November on their first face-to-face date.

“La Mesa police tried to identify him for a couple of months,” Nicholass said, adding that a break in the case came after ChristianMingle.com turned over computer records that helped cops identify Banks.

Banks was charged with two counts of rape and pleaded not guilty. He posted bond of $500,000 and was released. Calls to several numbers associated with Banks were not returned. Authorities did not know if he had obtained an attorney.

“We continue to assist the La Mesa police department with its investigation in every way possible. The safety and security of our members is extremely important to us,” ChristianMingle.com said in a statement through spokeswoman Arielle Schechtman. “In addition to having experts manually review all profile content and photos, we have developed several proprietary, automated tools to ensure the highest possible level of safety and privacy for our communities.”

If you have been arrested for a Sex Crime the Law Offices of Daniel R. Perlman can help. Please contact a Los Angeles Sex Crime Attorney today to have your case reviewed.

Source: Mason County Daily News “Christian Mingle Date Rape Victims Sought by California Cops,” February 15, 2013.

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