SOUTHINGTON - A Massachusetts man accused of trying to meet up in Southington with someone he thought was a 14-year-old boy is unlikely to be prosecuted.
Carl Bezo, 50, of Westfield, Mass., applied for accelerated rehabilitation, a first-time-offender program, Tuesday in Bristol Superior Court.
The program would require him to serve up to two years on a pretrial form of probation with the understanding that, if he stays out of trouble, the case against him would be dropped.
Additionally, state prosecutor Elizabeth Moseley said Tuesday that Bezo’s attorney would have the right to withdraw the program application - allowing him to apply in the future should he be arrested again - if she reviews the case and finds that she would not be able to prove his guilt at trial.
Bezo, who is free on $50,000 bond, is due back in court on Aug. 24.
He had previously applied for a different program but was found ineligible.
According to the arrest warrant, in September, Bezo began chatting with someone through an online dating site who actually was an adult posing as an underage boy.
The inpostor is part of the POP (Prey on Predators) Squad, a local group that has been responsible for other arrests in the area involving similar allegations.
Bezo, police say, communicated with the POP Squad member, who goes by “Incognito,” for several days.
During the conversations, “Incognito” said he was only 14 years old, which Bezo said he didn’t have a problem with, according to the arrest warrant.
The two allegedly exchanged photos before eventually agreeing to meet at the Walmart in Southington on Sept. 28. The encounter was recorded and shows Bezo acknowledging that what he was doing was wrong, according to the warrant.
However, during their interaction, Bezo denied ever intending to do anything besides talk and get dinner with the fictitious juvenile.
The video of the encounter and the chat logs between the two were later turned over to police in Massachusetts and Southington.
At the time of the allegations, Bezo worked as a custodian at a Westfield, Mass., middle school.
The day after the Walmart meeting, Bezo showed up for work and was confronted by school officials about the video of the encounter, which had been posted online. He was placed on leave and later fired.
Bezo faces one count of attempted risk of injury to a minor.
Justin Muszynski can be reached at 860-973-1809 or firstname.lastname@example.org.