Ethan, 20, used the popular filter to take a photo of himself and create a profile for a girl called 'Esther' on Tinder, where one man who 'just happened to be a cop' messaged him.
Police say his Tinder account had 'Esther' listed as a 19-year-old, which was when he was messaged by San Mateo Officer Robert Davies.
Suspect Robert Davies. Credit: San Jose Police Department
However, the pair later switched to communicating on Kik and Snapchat, which was not only where things got a lot more 'explicit', but also where 'Esther' revealed she was younger than she initially said.
While the age of consent varies from state to state, in California, where Ethan is based, it is 18.
Ethan messaged Davies explaining he was 16 years old, asking if that would bother him. According to police, screengrabs of the conversation showed it did not bother the suspect.
The San Francisco Bay Area college student explained he had been inspired to 'get someone' as he had a female friend who had been molested as a child.
Speaking to NBC Bay Area, he said: "I believe he messaged me, 'Are you down to have some fun tonight?' and I decided to take advantage of it."
Ethan - who did not wish to provide his surname - added: "I was just looking to get someone. He just happened to be a cop."
Davies was arrested last week by San Jose police on suspicion of discussing sexual activity with a minor on social media.
He has since been placed on paid administrative leave, according to the San Mateo Police Department, and now faces a charge of contacting a minor to commit a felony.
Ina statement, San Mateo Police Chief Susan Manheimer said:"This alleged conduct, if true, is in no way a reflection of all that we stand for as a Department, and is an affront to the tenets of our department and our profession as a whole.
"As San Mateo police officers, we have sworn an oath to serve and protect our communities. I can assure you that we remain steadfast to this commitment to serving our community with 'Professionalism, Integrity, and Excellence'."
Featured Image Credit: NBC Bay Area