Dracut YouTuber continues the hunt for child predators
DRACUT — After parking his car along a side road in Haverhill on a recent Saturday night, a Dracut man, who goes by the alias “Blazin,” straps on a tactical vest with steel-plate inserts, designed to stop a bullet or a jab from a blade.
Blazin then pulls a hoodie on to conceal the vest, which he estimates weighs about 25 pounds.
In the car with Blazin is his girlfriend, who goes by “Ten,” and their friend and associate, “Tiny.” They don’t want their real names exposed out of concern that someone might try to track them down.
Their unease is understandable, considering what they’re up to.
The trio drove to Haverhill to confront and expose a man who allegedly exchanged lewd and sexual messages with a 14-year-old boy on the dating app Grindr. Blazin knows this because he was posing as the 14-year-old boy.
“Some police are saying you shouldn’t be doing this because what if the person has a weapon, and this, that and the other thing,” Blazin said. “I go out there and make sure I have a bulletproof vest on. I try to protect myself the best way possible.”
Blazin operates the YouTube channel, “Wolf Pack Pred Hunta,” where he posts videos capturing the moment he confronts potential child predators. The channel’s description states, “Catching preds one at a time. The preds will get exposure and the evidence turned in.”
“I’m out here for the kids,” said Blazin, who is a father of two children, including a 1-year-old who he shares with Ten.
“I want these creeps exposed,” he added. “I’m trying to be a contributing member of society. I want a safer society for the kids. I’m not trying to put on a show to get views, I’m there to get these guys charged.”
To lure in what Blazin crudely describes as “chomos” — a slang word for “child molesters” — he creates a “decoy” profile on Grindr, using a headshot of himself altered with an app that makes him look like a teenager. He then waits for someone to message him.
During the ensuing private conversations, Blazin said he ensures those he’s talking to are aware of his young and phony age. He has encountered many vulgar exchanges, including times when men have sent him nude photos, while asking for naked images in return. Blazin saves all the chat logs for evidence.
Blazin shows one conversation where a man wrote in a message, “You’re really cute. Wouldn’t mind seeing you naked.”
“He’s saying that to a 14-year-old boy,” an incredulous Blazin said. “Back in the day when these guys wanted to get a kid they would go to the park with puppy dogs and candy in their hand. Now they have so much easier access to kids, right in the palm of their hands.”
After the online exchanges get sexual, Blazin said he will set up a “date,” asking to meet the target in person. Blazin then arrives on the scene, camera in hand, livestreaming the meet on YouTube. With the truth revealed, sometimes the flustered men will talk on camera with Blazin, while others refuse. Either way, Blazin then hands over the evidence of the inappropriate exchanges to police.
Several of these encounters have ended with an arrest, including the one in Haverhill on this recent Saturday night.
Putting on the tactical vest is one of the several checklist items for Blazin, before he, along with Ten and Tiny, confront the suspect they are targeting in Haverhill.
Blazin said their target is 62-year-old David Pare, who lives in an apartment building on River Street, right around the corner from where they parked.
The group said Pare allegedly thinks he’s meeting 14-year-old “Mikey” at his apartment at 8 p.m. They arrived in Haverhill an hour early to prepare for the encounter.
Blazin walks around outside the apartment building with his cellphone to ensure the livestream will function properly in the area. Tiny goes inside the building to study the layout.
“I’m (Blazin’s) backup in case he needs an extra person on catches,” Tiny said. “I don’t think people should go out on catches alone.”
Before the encounter, Blazin displays the chat logs he accumulated with Pare, including one message where the 62-year-old allegedly asked the teen if he can “take some hot photos” of him. Pare also allegedly wrote to the teen that he would be wearing red lingerie upon his arrival.
The group acknowledges the risk associated with meeting a stranger at their home. They have come up with a code word, “cookies,” to be used if a weapon is seen inside the apartment.
With the camera rolling, the group marches single-file into the building right at 8 p.m.
The target’s door has a peephole, and a security camera right above it. Blazin knocks on the door, claiming to be Mikey. A man responds, but refuses to open.
Blazin knocks again, more authoritatively, now changing his feigned story, claiming he is the concerned father of Mikey, wanting to know why Pare has been exchanging crude messages with his son online.
“Can I ask you why you said these things?” Blazin calls through the door.
The man on the other side ignores the group, before Blazin says, “You leave us no other choice,” while Ten calls out, “We’re gonna call the police!”
With that threat, the door swings open, with a man, later identified as Pare, standing there. A nervous Pare, who bumbles over his words several times, admits to talking to the 14-year-old on Grindr.
“He was trying to come over and I was trying to get away from that,” Pare said. “I don’t want nothin’ to do with that.”
Blazin, equipped with a binder containing a list of questions, begins to quiz Pare. Blazin is calm and amiable as he questions Pare, even stopping at one point to compliment him on his red nail polish.
As Blazin said before the meet, “You attract more with honey than you do with vinegar.”
While Blazin questions Pare, Tiny directs the camera at them for the livestream. Tiny would later reveal about 110 viewers were tuned in for the encounter.
Blazin’s questions to Pare include, “Why are you trying to hook up with a 14-year-old?”
“We were just chattin’ and it went overboard, all right?” Pare responds, later adding he’s “lonely.”
The interaction concludes with Pare claiming he has never had sexual contact with a child in the past and that he would never arrange to meet with a minor again.
Police are contacted, and within minutes, two Haverhill Police cruisers pull up in front of the apartment building. Pare is taken into custody and placed into the backseat of one of the cruisers.
Blazin hands over the flash drive holding all the chat logs to police, and lets out an emphatic howl, his trademark response to a successful “hunt,” while keeping with the “Wolf Pack” theme.
“It feels good, because I know he’s not talking to any other kids,” Blazin said. “He’s going to learn a really good (expletive) lesson now. I can sleep good tonight.”
Attempts by The Sun to reach the Haverhill Police were unsuccessful. However, Glen Johnson, a spokesperson for the Essex District Attorney’s Office, revealed Pare was arraigned on March 20 on a felony count of enticement of a child under the age of 16. He was held on $1,000 cash bail or $10,000 bond, and is scheduled to return to court on April 12.
Pare’s attorney, Alex Moskovsky, was not immediately available for comment.
‘It never goes away’
Blazin said he was inspired to start the Wolf Pack Pred Hunta channel after watching a group called “Predator Poachers Massachusetts,” which also works to corner and expose potential pedophiles and then posts their encounters online.
Such groups are becoming popular nationwide. As Tiny points out, there are probably hundreds of such groups operating across the country.
“Every night there’s someone catching a predator,” Tiny said. “Every night.”
Adding to his motivation to develop the YouTube channel, Blazin said he was molested as a little boy. He said he doesn’t want other children to be exposed to that sort of trauma.
“I can even remember it as clear as day from when I was 5 years old,” Blazin said about the abuse. “The trauma stays in your head. It never goes away.”
Ryan Shields, an assistant professor of criminal justice at UMass Lowell, cites data which shows around 15% to 25% of girls and approximately 5% of boys will experience sexual abuse before the age of 18.
Shields added those statistics, accumulated by David Finkelhor, a national leader in child sexual abuse research at the University of New Hampshire, are “conservative estimates.”
“Sexual abuse is among the most underreported offenses,” Shields explained.
The impacts of child sexual abuse on the victim are dramatic. Shields said it leads “to a host of mental health, behavioral health, and social problems,” including depression, substance use disorders and an increased risk factor for future victimization. There are even links to heart disease, he said.
Though the vast majority of people who experience sexual abuse as children will not go on to become sexual abusers themselves, it does increase the victim’s risk for future perpetration.
“It effects the child, it impacts their family members, and their future family,” Shields said. “The circles of impact ripple outwards.”
Due to the damage done, Blazin said he is a proponent of more harsh penalties for convicted sex offenders, including longer terms of incarceration, and even capital punishment in the case of repeat offenders.
Shields stressed there is hope for rehabilitation for those who commit such offenses, adding treatment can work when well managed. According to Shields, the research shows “the average person who commits this crime does not fall into a ‘beyond hope’ category.”
“Programs that are individualistic in nature, speaking to the individual client’s needs, they are going to be more effective than cookie-cutter approaches.” Shields said. “People who commit sex offenses do it for a variety of reasons, so treatment can’t be a one-size-fits-all policy. It has to speaks to the individual’s risk and needs.”
Shields said we should not rely solely on the criminal justice system to address the problem of sexual abuse, but also focus on prevention efforts to stop the abuse before it starts.
“What do we need to do as a community to finally do something to stop harm before it occurs?” Shields said. “If we just have after-the-fact responses, that always requires a kid getting hurt.”
In the meantime, people like Blazin, Ten and Tiny are going to continue to prowl social media.
“I’m going to keep doing this until the state of Massachusetts and every other state realizes we have a problem,” Blazin said.
Follow Aaron Curtis on Twitter @aselahcurtis