Authorities used social media or websites such as Craigslist and Skip the Games to pose as teens in the 13- to 14-year-old range in “Operation Rotten Pumpkin.”

Seven men from around the Florida Panhandle and south Alabama, including a Crestview man, were arrested by Pensacola lawmen in “Operation Rotten Pumpkin,” an undercover sting that targeted people seeking sex with underage teens.


Authorities used social media or websites such as Craigslist and Skip the Games to pose as teens in the 13- to 14-year-old range.


ECSO pointed out that most people responding to the solicitations quickly backed out once they realized they were dealing with what they thought was an underage teen.


The seven were arrested Wednesday and Thursday nights, Escambia County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Chip Simmons said.


Those arrested include:


• James David McAllister, 34, Cantonment


• James Patrick Dibble, 20, Pensacola


• Kevin Gerald Dailey, 25, Pensacola


• Benjamin Larry Marshall, 33, Pensacola


• Ronaldo Castro Bautista, 54, Orange Beach


• Michael Dawayne Gulley, 23, Prichard


• Patrick John Bradt, 47, Crestview


All face charges of using a computer to solicit a child, traveling to meet after using a computer to lure a child and using a two-way communication device to commit a felony.


The operation involved the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, Pensacola Police Department, State Attorney’s Office, Homeland Security, Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office, Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office and Walton County Sheriff’s Office.