An Oklahoma child predator was grooming a “staggering” number of teenage girls for sex — and to each, he was presenting a wildly different persona, deputies said.
To some potential victims, Troy Dustin Clark, 38, styled himself as a successful businessman looking to be a teenage girl’s “super secret sugar daddy,” according to deputies. Clark told other girls that he was mere months from death, deputies said, and that he wanted to spend what little time he had left “pampering his special girl.” To impress teen girls who were more “hardened,” Clark portrayed himself as a hustler and drug dealer, the Wagoner County Sheriff’s Office said.
Clark coaxed several of his victims into sending him suggestive photos, deputies said. About 100 girls between 14 and 20 were targeted in total, the sheriff's office told KJRH.
“We’re talking about a textbook sexual predator who gets a sense of his victims, then adapts his narrative to reel them in,” Jack Thorp, the district attorney in Wagoner County, said in a statement.
That all ended on Friday, when Clark was arrested at his mother’s home in Muskogee, Oklahoma, according to the sheriff’s office. A day earlier, he allegedly set up a date with a 15-year-old girl — not realizing the girl’s social media accounts were being controlled by Wagoner deputies. The suggestive photos other girls allegedly sent Clark will be used in the criminal case against him.
“This Dusty Clark character is one prolific predator,” Wagoner County Sheriff Chris Elliott said in a statement following Clark’s arrest. “We’re concerned there are a whole lot more victims out there that we don’t know about.”
Clark’s plan on Thursday had been to eat with the girl at a fast food restaurant, and then to go to a motel and have sex, deputies said. The 15-year-old girl said she would be wearing a blue flowered dress, and Clark sent her selfies of himself taken in a car en route to the restaurant, according to the sheriff’s office.
Deputies stationed a county employee wearing a blue flowered dress inside the restaurant to make sure the sting went off without a hitch. Outside, deputies in unmarked cars waited patiently for Clark to show up for the “date.”
Clark never showed up at the restaurant, according to deputies — but the selfie he had taken inside the car (which belonged to his mother) was enough for deputies to go to his mother’s home the next day and confront him.
“These big old guys told Clark they didn’t appreciate being stood up at the restaurant,” Elliott said in a statement, adding that Clark then realized the male deputies “were the ‘sweet young thing’ he’d been grooming.”
Deputies interviewed Clark, and “he confirmed everything we already knew, and, unfortunately, much more,” Elliott said.
Authorities had begun investigating the case on May 8 when a 15-year-old girl and her mother went to police reporting that a man named “Easton Sloan” was sending the girl lewd private messages over Facebook, deputies said.
After reporting the messages, the girl’s mother said she was surprised authorities went after the man so aggressively.
“I didn’t expect them to do anything, but I wanted it on record if this guy did something worse,” she said, according to a statement released by the sheriff’s officer. The mother was not identified because her child was the victim of a crime. “Too often, we’re told to ‘just block him,’ or to take steps to protect ourselves. What about the girls who don’t know better? Who protects them?”
That’s when deputies started posing as the 15-year-old girl to chat with “Easton Sloan” themselves, according to the sheriff’s office. He sent lewd message after lewd message — and soon enough, a date was set, deputies said.
It took some sleuthing to figure out that “Easton Sloan” was actually Clark, deputies said. The selfie from inside Clark's mother's vehicle was another clue that pointed to Clark, according to the sheriff’s office
Clark is being held in the Wagoner County jail, and faces charges in neighboring Okmulgee and Muskogee counties, deputies said. In Wagoner County alone, Clark faces charges of solicitation of lewd acts from a minor under the age of 16 and using a computer to solicit lewd acts and conversations with a minor.
He is being held on a $250,000 bond in Wagoner County, deputies said.
“Our brave young victim saved future victims from being robbed of their innocence,” Thorp said of the 15-year-old who reported the lewd Facebook messages. “But she wasn’t the first child solicited for sex acts by this grown man on social media.”