The press release posted to the Department of Justice Eastern District of Texas website reads like something from a tabloid website.
"Would-be murderer and child rapist used the dark web to try necrophilia and cannibalism."
23-year-old Alexander Nathan Barter pleaded guilty December 20, 2019 to attempted coercion and enticement of a minor and distribution of child pornography. As a part of the plea deal, he agreed to a 20 year sentence for each count with both counsels able to argue for the sentence to either be concurrent or consecutive.
In the end, U.S. District Judge Michael Truncale sided with the prosecution and determined that his sentence would be 480 months followed by lifetime supervised release.
According to the release, Barter posted an add on the dark web in October 2018 stating, “I’d like to try necrophilia and cannibalism, and see how it feels to take a life. If you’d be willing to let me kill you, are in the US (preferably in the south) and can travel by car, contact me.”
An undercover officer saw the add and responded posing as the father of a 13-year-old girl.
Between October 9, 2018 and October 19, 2018 the officer and Barter exchanged messages which included Barter's repeated interest in raping, killing, and eating the 13-year old child. Barter provided the undercover with instructions on traveling from Florida to Shelby County, Texas, what to tell the child to get her acquiescence to travel, and how to conceal evidence of their crime.
On October 19, 2018, Barter arrived at the designated meet site in Joaquin, Texas with a knife, trash bag, cellular phone, and a tablet, the release states.
“As this chilling case demonstrates, online talk is not always just talk. The constant vigilance of our law enforcement partners has prevented an evildoer from finding a likeminded accomplice and bringing his grisly plan to fruition,” said U.S. Attorney Stephen J. Cox. “This case is a sobering reminder of how the brave men and women of law enforcement face down the worst of the worst in the scariest of scenarios.”
“In my 23-year-career in law enforcement, this is among the most morally depraved and appalling criminal conspiracies that I have come across,” said Mark Dawson, special agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations Houston. “Without the quick and decisive actions of special agents from HSI Cocoa Beach and HSI Beaumont this disturbed predator would still be out there looking for potential victims to carry out his sick and demented fantasies.”
The release indicates that this case was a part of Project Safe Childhood.