WYOMING, Mich. (WOOD) — A popular Kentwood YouTuber said he was only trying to help when he and some friends set up their own predator sting operation at a local motel.
Now, he’s suing Wyoming police in federal court, claiming officers took his video equipment that night and let the suspected predator go. He said police have refused to return his gear.
Kaizer Kinsley, 19, claims his traps over the last year and a half have led to the arrests of at least 30 predators across the country and in Canada.
He posts the sting operations to his more than 700,000 followers on his YouTube channel under the name Omma. Kinsley claims he makes up to $15,000 a month doing it.
Since June 2020, his YouTube page has received nearly 63 million views.
“I do it from my apartment, I use Airbnbs, we’ll get motel rooms,” he told News 8 Saturday.
Kinsley said he was inspired in part by Chris Hansen’s former “To Catch a Predator” show.
“Even if these guys don’t get arrested, their face is still out there, generally their families know or find out, and to me that’s pretty much as good as it’s going to get,” he said.
And that, he said, was the plan on June 1 at the Grand Rapids Inn on 28th Street SW in Wyoming.
The suspect, Kinsley said, reached out to him through social media.
“We had this guy, he was coming in to meet what he thought was a 15-year-old girl,” he said. “Obviously, it wasn’t. It was me and my team. He showed up.”
In the lawsuit, Kinsley said he told the man to show up with a pizza so they could easily identify him. He said when the man showed up, his friends called police.
When the suspect walked into the motel room, Kinsley told him there was no 15-year-old girl.
Kinsley said the man noticed a camera.
“He immediately started freaking out, and like basically going crazy, saying crazy things,” Kinsley said. “So EMS came, police came, whatnot.”
Instead of arresting the suspect, Kinsley claimed, Wyoming police took Kinsley’s gear: a laptop, a Sony camera, two GoPros and a microphone worth $5,500.
“Basically, they held my stuff because of that,” he said. “They took all my equipment.”
According to Kinsley, they didn’t say why.
He said he’s called Wyoming police to get it back.
“I’ve called quite a few times,” he said. “I get basically no response from anyone.”
So, on Wednesday, Kinsley filed a federal lawsuit against the city of Wyoming and six unnamed officers.
The goal, he said, is to get “my stuff back.”
A spokeswoman for Wyoming told News 8 the the city is aware of the lawsuit but wouldn’t comment because it is pending.