Man allegedly posed as teen reality star Maddie Ziegler to lure young girls in Texas

BACLIFF, Texas -- A Texas man has been accused of posing as a popular teenage celebrity online while attempting to get underage girls to send him nude pictures of themselves.

Steven Jones, 35, was arrested Tuesday at the trailer where he lives with his mother on in Bacliff, a bayside city located about 40 miles southeast of Houston.

Investigators said Jones had been chatting on Facebook with at least a dozen girls, ages 10 to 16, across the country. Prosecutors told KTRK that Jones posed as Maddie Ziegler, creating fake Facebook profiles of the young celebrity who got her start on the show "Dance Moms" and is now better known for her appearance in a music video for Sia and for her role as a judge on "So You Think You Can Dance."

"He would befriend underage girls, engage in communications with them through Facebook. Sometimes the communications became intimate," said Galveston County Assistant District Attorney Adam Poole.

Court documents state Jones asked one girl to show him nude pictures. Police said that child's parents alerted them. Investigators tracked the IP address from the bogus page to a trailer park where they arrested Jones.

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"He needs to be out of this park, away from Bacliff. That's the way I feel with it," said neighbor James Hooper.

Some neighbors said the allegations confirm earlier suspicions they had after seeing the way Jones would interact with some of the young girls living here.

"Just told him to leave the kids alone," Hooper recalled. "No more swimming with the children. Run with people your own age."

Jones returned home while a KTRK camera was rolling. A reporter asked him to describe what had happened.

"I haven't done anything wrong," Jones said.

His mother, Debra Campbell, rushed him inside as the reporter attempted to find out his version of events.

She said, "I don't know what happened. No charges have been filed. He has not been arrested."

Authorities said Jones had some medical episode during the process of being arrested. He was taken to the hospital and not booked at jail. They expect him to be re-arrested and charged.
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