Blacklick man sentenced to 25 years in prison for posing online as teenage internet start to coerce 10-year-old child
Defendant used work computer at Worthington library to reach out to him
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Darren M. Kamnitzer, 45, of Blacklick, was sentenced in U.S. District Court today to 300 months in prison for producing child pornography.
Benjamin C. Glassman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Joseph M. Deters, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Cincinnati Division, Westerville Police Chief Charles Chandler, and other members of the FBI’s Child Exploitation Task Force announced the sentence handed down today by U.S. District Judge Sarah D. Morrison.
According to court documents, in September 2018, law enforcement in Switzerland received information that Kamnitzer, using the Twitter handle “jacobauditions,” had contacted a 10-year-old girl and convinced her to send him multiple sexually explicit photographs and videos of herself.
Kamnitzer was posing as the manager for Jacob Sartorious, an American teenage singer and internet personality. The defendant asked the girl if she wanted to audition to be in a music video with Sartorious and told her if she completed all the requirements of the audition, she and a parent would be flown to California, where the music video would be produced.
Kamnitzer initially requested photographs of the girl clothed, then instructed her to take photographs in a bikini, and eventually coerced her into sending him nude videos focused on her genitalia and anus. The defendant assured the girl that it was all part of the audition and that all the other participants had done it.
When Swiss authorities learned of the activity, they contacted Twitter, who shut down Kamnitzer’s account. Twitter also submitted a tip to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the FBI became involved in the case.
The FBI traced the IP address used to a computer at the Worthington Public Library. Kamnitzer was employed as the Network Administrator for the library and was at work on at least two occasions when he reached out to the victim via his Twitter account. A search warrant executed at Kamnitzer’s residence revealed evidence that he had communicated with other minors online.
In April 2019, Kamnitzer waived indictment and pleaded guilty to a bill of information.
U.S. Attorney Glassman commended the cooperative investigation by the FBI’s Child Exploitation Task Force, as well as Assistant United States Attorney Heather A. Hill, who is representing the United States in this case.