A father embroiled in a custody dispute posted a phony ad on the Internet offering to give away his five-year-old boy to make his wife look bad, investigators said Wednesday.
The ad, written as if it were placed by the mother, listed the boy as "free to a good home" on the popular Craigslist.org website.
"I've had him now for five years. I've somewhat abused him, but I cannot control myself or him," the ad read. "I have mental problems. DCF (The Department of Children & Families) won't remove him. His father lives in California and has no contact with him. I don't make enough money to support him and myself."
Raymond Lawrence Lee, 50, of El Cajon, Calif., told detectives he was upset with the child's mother when he placed the ad the day after Thanksgiving, said Mike Ward, a spokesman for the Escambia County Sheriff's Office. The ad has been taken down.
The mother has custody of the boy. Investigators went to the mother's Pensacola home and found the child was safe. Ward said there had never been a DCF investigation of abuse of the child.
Ward said he didn't think there were any charges that could be filed against the father. He said they notified authorities in San Diego.
San Diego police spokeswoman Monica Munoz said the case had been referred to the Internet Crimes Against Children task force.