Vigilantes in Atlantic City, Brigantine catch accused predators
A vigilante group that confronts accused child predators on video helped Atlantic City police arrest two men on charges of attempting to lure minors, while also prompting a similar arrest in Brigantine.
Referring to the group as “concerned citizens,” police said they provided officers with screen shots and detailed information of communication between Catalano and an individual who had posed on an app as a 14-year-old boy.
Catalano was charged with luring/enticing a child by various means.
A day later, the same group contacted Atlantic City police about Mark Bloodgood, also 58, who they said had sent messages to someone he believed was a 15-year-old boy, attempting to arrange a sexual encounter. Screenshots and detailed information from the online chats were shared with police.
Bloodgood, of Chester Springs, Pennsylvania, also was charged with luring/enticing a child by various means.
Catalano has been the President/CEO of Recovery Force of Atlantic County Inc. since March 2017, according to a Linked In profile.
Before that, he listed eight years of work at Northeast Treatment Centers in Philadelphia, as Clinical Director and Facilities Manager, ending in 2015.
As reported by Breaking AC, Tommy Fellows is the man in the video confronting Catalano, who eventually gets him to call police ahead of the arrest.
Atlantic City Police continue to investigate both cases and can be reached at 609-347-5766.
Information can be sent via text message to tip411 (847411).
Also on May 22, Brigantine police arrested 55-year-old Michael Sharp, of Sewell, at a local hotel on the report that Sharp had sexually explicit conversations via app with a person he believed was a 15-year-old boy.
Police said the information and evidence was received "from members of an organization that seeks to expose individuals who utilize the internet and mobile-based applications to meet with minors for the purposes of sexual acts," though not affiliated with law enforcement.
Breaking AC reported it was the same group led by Fellows.
Sharp was charged with second-degree attempting to lure a child via electronic means, with the purpose to commit a criminal offense with or against the child.
Last year, an Ocean County-based video vigilante also led law enforcement to a couple of accused child predators.
In those cases, Toms River Police along with the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office had stressed that residents should leave such work to law enforcement.