Crime

He brought along food, alcohol and a condom to meet a 13-year-old for sex. Now he’s headed to prison.

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A Byron man was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison Wednesday after admitting he tried to arrange a sexual encounter on Robins Air Force Base with a person he thought was an underage girl.

David Roberts, 45, pleaded guilty to attempted online enticement of a minor in January. After his release from prison, he must serve five years on supervised release. At the time of his arrest, Roberts was a contract construction worker on the base.

As part of his plea agreement with federal prosecutors, Roberts must forfeit two cell phones and a laptop computer.

According to the agreement:

Agents with the U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations posted a Craigslist ad saying a female was looking for someone to “hang out with after school” who had access to Robins Air Force Base.

Roberts responded Oct. 28, 2015, saying he could get on base. He sent a picture of himself with his wife — who “was in a state of undress.”

An undercover agent posing as a 13-year-old girl responded to Roberts and the two talked via email until Nov. 12, 2015.

The undercover agent told Roberts she would meet him at the Burger King on base Oct. 30, 2015, and Roberts went to the restaurant where he was spotted by agents as he ordered food and sat down. The agent later told Roberts she couldn’t make it to Burger King because her mom had come home.

As the two continued to talk about meeting in person, Roberts said he would perform a sex act on her and if she wanted, they could have sex. He acknowledged that he thought he was talking with a 13-year-old girl.

They agreed to meet Nov. 12, 2015, and the agent asked Roberts to bring food, wine coolers and a condom.

Roberts went to a home on the base where he understood the girl lived and knocked on the door. Air Force investigators answered the door and arrested him, taking the food, strawberry alcoholic beverages and condom he’d brought.

During Wednesday’s hearing, federal prosecutor Elizabeth Howard said the facts and circumstances show Roberts didn’t know he wasn’t meeting a real 13-year-old girl.

Roberts apologized during the hearing, saying, “I’m sorry. I made a mistake.”

Information from Telegraph archives was used in this report.

Amy Leigh Womack: 478-744-4398, @awomackmacon

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