SILOAM SPRINGS -- A Siloam Springs man was arrested in connection with attempting to extort girls by claiming to have nude photographs of them and threatening to release the images.
Matthew Nance, 22, was being held Wednesday in the Benton County jail with a $75,000 bond set.
He was arrested Monday in connection with four counts of sexual extortion. Prosecutors haven't file formal charges.
Siloam Springs police started investigating in April after the mother of a 17-year-old girl reported the incident, according to a probable cause affidavit.
The girl told police she was in Walmart when Nance, who worked for a bank, approached her about opening a checking and savings account. Nance set up the account and asked for her cellphone to set up the mobile banking app, according to the affidavit.
The girl said she received a message from someone on Snapchat, and the person threatened to send nude photographs of her to her parents, boyfriend and friends if she didn't do what she was told. The person warned her against saving their conversation, it stated.
The affidavit also stated the person instructed her to send pictures of her outfit and underwear, and she refused. The girl said a search of the user name on the Snapchat account shows Nance's name.
Police questioned Nance, who denied being involved and claimed someone was using his name, according to the affidavit. Police obtained a search warrant to Snapchat for the account information and was able to connect it to Nance, it stated.
There were several chats with four girls including the 17-year-old where Nance was trying to extort the girls by saying he had nude photographs of them and would release them if they didn't comply with his demands, according to the affidavit.
One of the girls told Nance she was 15 years old and he told her he had "nudes" of her and she was promoting child pornography, the affidavit stated.
Police questioned Nance again and he admitted sending the messages to the 17-year-old, the affidavit states. He said the girl's Snapchat account name came up when he had her phone and he remembered it and sent her a message. Nance told police he didn't know the other three girls. He said he would find girls on TikTok and go to their other social media accounts and try to find scandalous photographs to use against them, according to the affidavit.
His arraignment is scheduled for 8 a.m. July 25 in Benton County Circuit Judge Brad Karren's court.