Saline man preyed on Ohio teen after meeting her in online game

Federal law enforcement says a 21-year-old Southeast Michigan man preyed upon a teenage girl after the two met playing an online video game.

According to documents, Danil Baker of Saline earned the trust of a 14-year-old girl from Ohio while the two played a popular game called Roblox. Last December, he picked her up from her school in Ohio before driving her back into Michigan where he sexually assaulted her. 

Baker faces 20 years in federal prison for the crimes. He's also facing charges in a separate case in Washtenaw County.

Cyber security experts aren't surprised that predators would use a game that was geared toward children.

"It’s a tactic that scammers and groomers will do," said David Derigiotis, with the firm Embroker. "They will build trust with the child and get them to reveal information and get that comfort level with them."

Another factor in cases like this is the general accessibility that everyone is accustomed to, says Derigiotis.

"Everybody walking around with a smartphone, the use of communication apps, social media, online gaming," he said.

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A federal complaint against Baker said he pretended to be a 17-year-old and knew fully the victim was 14. He managed to convince her to give him her phone number before the two started texting. He allegedly convinced her to share nude images.

The alleged assault happened on Dec. 9 when FBI agents say Baker picked up the victim from her school and took her to a park. After unsuccessfully trying to find a hotel, he assaulted her. 

She was later found in a Kroger grocery store crying. Her parents came and picked her up soon after.

Baker is currently out on bond. He was charged with Online enticement of a minor to engage in sexual activity and transportation with intent to engage in sexual activity.