Parenting

Male Predators Dressed as Animals, Lured Boy to 'Furry Parties' for Sex, Officials Say

Chicago Cubs' Daniel Murphy watches in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Detroit Tigers in Detroit, Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced that a group of men has been arrested in connection with the repeated sexual abuse of a young boy during “furry parties” in Bucks County.

According to Shapiro, Kenneth Fenske, 57, of Quakertown, Bucks County; David Parker, 38, of Stroudsburg, Monroe County; Jeffrey Harvey, 40, of West Wyoming, Luzerne County; Craig Knox; and Stephen Taylor have all been arrested in connection with the abuse that began in 2009 when the boy was nine years old.

“This is a very disturbing series of cases that we want to bring to the public’s attention today,” Shapiro announced in a press conference. He said the purpose of the announcement was not only to inform the public about the case, but because his office needs the public’s support and input.

“We have uncovered a group of grown men that have been sexually abusing a young boy,” Shapiro said. “Last summer, Agent [Dan] Block [of the Child Sexual Predator Unit], posing online as an underage boy, was contacted several times by a person seeking sex with a young boy. That person eventually came to what he thought was a rendezvous with a young boy for sex and instead encountered Agent Block.”

At that time Jeffrey Harvey was arrested and charged with various sexual offenses. During the investigation into Harvey, the office of the attorney general was led to additional suspects in the case. The victim, who is now in foster care and receiving therapy with a guardian ad litem, gradually revealed more information to Agent Block, Shapiro said, which led to the arrest of Kenneth Fenske this week.

According to Shapiro, “Starting when this victim was nine years old back in 2009, one of the other subjects, Parker, began taking the victim to a home where the victim recalled a group of men dressed up as animals.” Shapiro explained that “people who dress up as animals often refer to themselves as ‘furries.’ Furries dress up as animals and then identify as that chosen animal. For some, but not all, being a furry is a sexual fetish.”

“According to the victim, a furry dressed up as a red fox known as ‘Lupon’ would take him upstairs during these furry parties and sexually abuse him,” said Shapiro. “This abuse occurred numerous times and on numerous dates. The victim identified this suspect as Kenneth Fenske.”

“This is a horrendous case,” Attorney General Shapiro said in a press release. “It is deeply disturbing to me not only as Attorney General of Pennsylvania, but as a father of young children. We care about this victim and all victims of sexual abuse.”

The investigation is ongoing and there will likely be more arrests according to Shapiro. “We believe it is likely there could be more victims out there from this ring of abuse. We want to help them and protect them from any further abuse.” His office is asking for the public’s help. Individuals with information related to the case are asked to contact the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General or the Bucks County District Attorney.

In total, five suspects have been arrested and charged with a variety of sexual offenses in this case:

  • Kenneth C. Fenske, 57, of 2724 North Old Bethlehem Pike, Quakertown, arrested Friday and charged with multiple counts of child rape, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, and unlawful contact with a minor. Each of the charges are first-degree felonies. Fenske was arraigned before a Bucks County magistrate and ordered held on $750,000 bail.
  • David Parker, 38, of Stroudsburg, Monroe County, faces charges of child rape and related counts, including possession of child pornography.
  • Jeffrey Harvey, 40, of West Wyoming, Luzerne County, has been arrested and charged in Lackawanna County with unlawful contact with a minor, criminal use of a cell phone, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and statutory sexual assault.
  • Craig Knox, who was arrested and charged with sexual offenses in Virginia. He has been extradited to Pennsylvania, where he is being held in Luzerne County.
  • Stephen Taylor has also been arrested in Virginia in connection with the case.