MADISON COUNTY, Ill. – A grand jury has indicted Kyle Swanson, 30, on three counts for unlawful restraint, obstruction of justice, and assault. The veteran operates a Facebook group and website called KTS Predator Hunters to track sexual predators. His bail is set at $40,000.
The indictment says that Swanson lied to entice a victim into his vehicle on January 12, 2021. He refused to let the person out when they requested and asked others to help destroy evidence in the case. He also threatened to hit a person in the vehicle.
The grand jury wants it to be clear that people who practice vigilante justice may face consequences for their actions. They need to let law enforcement do their jobs.
Swanson started the group in 2019 after a female friend got a creepy message from a man on Facebook. He had been using his account to prank people on video chat sites. The posts targeting suspected predators went viral and he changed the focus from pranks to stings.
Some of the social media posts led to arrests. But, many of the charges were dropped by local prosecutors. The confrontations left Swanson and others involved in the KTS Predator Hunters Facebook groups open to legal issues
One person filed a defamation lawsuit against Swanson. It was dropped in early 2020. This allowed Swanson to continue working with the police.