Friday, June 4, 2010

Boynton man accused of false rape report

Boredom? Really? A heck of a reason to claim you were raping a child.

Paul Lee Hartness calls in false rape ... against himself

The call came in Thursday at the Redding, Calif., police station: A child molester confessing to the act while in progress.

He even gave his name, Gary Thomas, and told police he was raping a 15-year-old boy in a motel.

But the suspect's name wasn't Gary Thomas, he wasn't in California and he wasn't molesting a minor.

The man accused of making the call was Paul Lee Hartness, and investigators said he was in Boynton Beach making prank calls to police across the country. It's how he deals with boredom, police said.

Hartness, 42, was arrested Friday and charged with making a false report. He was released the same day on his own recognizance.

According to Boynton Beach police:

Redding investigators frantically searched all hotels to no avail, looking for the molester.

"You shouldn't be doing that with a 15-year-old," a police dispatcher said to a relaxed Hartness. "Is he wanting to do this?"

"No," Hartness said.

Then, while still on the phone, he pretended to rape a boy.

Police found the caller by tracking phone records to his cell phone and address on Farnworth Drive.

"Hartness stated he made the call to Redding police because he was bored but he would never hurt anyone," said the police report.

In March 2005, investigators said he called the Fredrick City police in Maryland and said he was in a white van parked at a school and about to sodomize a 16-year-old boy unless they could find him first.

In September that year, he was accused of calling the Nashville Police Department and requesting information about having sex with 16-year-olds.