Watertown (WTNY) -- A registered sex offender has been charged with sending inappropriate text messages to a 16 year old girl in Jefferson County.
Fifty five year old Paul Avallone of Watertown is charged with disseminating indecent material to minors, attempted rape in the third degree, attempted criminal sexual act in the third degree and endangering the welfare of a child.
The Jefferson County Sheriff's Department says Avallone began contacting the victim around Christmas through Facebook and text messages and a complaint was made to police on New Year's Eve. Police say Avallone in recent days believed he was texting the victim when in fact it was a member of the Sheriff's Department. Avallone drove to the Salmon Run Mall Thursday evening to meet with what he thought was going to be the 16 year old, but was instead arrested.
Police say their investigation is continuing and there is evidence that Avallone was contacting other minors in the area. He is being held on $5,000 bail.