Repeat offender heads back to prison for distributing, receiving and possessing child pornography
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas
HOUSTON – A 39-year-old Spring resident has been sent to prison…again, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.
Colt Jacoby Barnett pleaded guilty Oct. 17,2022, to multiple child pornography charges.
Today, U.S. District Judge Randy Crane ordered Barnett to prison for a total of 210 months for distribution, receipt and possession of child pornography as well as destruction of evidence. In handing down the prison terms, the court noted that the troubling fact that he was a repeat offender. Barnett was further ordered to pay $3,000 in restitution to a known victim and will serve 10 years on supervised release following completion of his prison term. During that time, he will have to comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the internet. Barnett will also be ordered to register as a sex offender.
“Offenders who exploit children by repeatedly traumatizing them via collecting and making their images available through the internet are a plague on our society,” said Hamdani. “This defendant was previously prosecuted and punished for similar behavior, and thankfully, the enhanced penalties for repeat offenders ensure he will spend even longer in prison this time, thus protecting our children further from his deviant criminal behavior.”
In January 2019, law enforcement conducted an investigation into the sharing of child pornography through the BitTorrent peer-to-peer network. They soon downloaded a video from a particular internet protocol (IP) address that was over two minutes in length. It showed a female under the age of 12 engaged in oral sex with an adult male.
The IP address was traced back to Barnett’s residence in Spring. The investigation revealed he was a registered sex offender from a previous conviction in 2004 for receipt of child pornography.
Authorities conducted a search warrant at his residence, at which time Barnett attempted to destroy a laptop computer in his possession. A forensic examination of the hard drive from the damaged laptop revealed 55 videos containing child pornography.
Barnett was found to have received and distributed child pornography via peer-to-peer programs. Of the 55 videos he possessed, at least two depicted bondage of a child, another two were over five minutes in length and one depicted the penetration of a minor under the age of five.
Barnett was permitted to remain on bond and voluntarily surrender to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
FBI Houston conducted the investigation.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Sherri Zack prosecuted the case, which was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood (PSC), a nationwide initiative the Department of Justice (DOJ) launched in May 2006 to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section leads PSC, which marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children and identifies and rescues victims. For more information about PSC, please visit DOJ’s PSC page. For more information about internet safety education, please visit the resources tab on that page.
Updated March 29, 2023
Project Safe Childhood