From the United States Attorney in Baton Rouge
Federal Jury Convicts Defendant on Attempted Enticement of a Minor
United States Attorney Brandon J. Fremin announced the conviction of Jonathan Francis Kimbrell, a 45-year-old resident of Livingston, Louisiana. Kimbrell was indicted by a federal grand jury on June 20, 2019, and charged with the attempted enticement of a minor.
After a four-day trial before U.S. District Judge John W. deGravelles, the jury unanimously convicted Kimbrell after deliberating for approximately two hours.
As the evidence at trial demonstrated, from May 2, 2019, until June 6, 2019, the defendant communicated online with two undercover FBI agents. The defendant believed that he was communicating with an 11-year old girl, her stepfather, and her mother, when in fact, the FBI agents had undertaken those online personas.
The defendant believed that the “stepfather” had been repeatedly molesting his “stepdaughter” and was now offering the “child” for sexual encounters by another adult. The defendant did his best to convince the stepfather, mother, and child that he should be allowed to join in molesting the child.
Hundreds of emails were exchanged over more than 30 days in which Kimbrell sent numerous graphic emails describing how he would have sex with the child. Kimbrell also did his best to convince the three that sex would be better with him than with the stepfather.
During the conversations with the fictitious child, Kimbrell developed and encouraged the nicknames of “Turtle” for himself and “Princess” for the child.
Eventually, Kimbrell met the undercover agents who he believed to be the stepfather and mother at a restaurant in Denham Springs to discuss the ground rules for his first sexual encounter with the 11-year old girl.
At this meeting, the defendant believed the child to be waiting in a motel room across the parking lot. Kimbrell was arrested as he left the restaurant walking toward the motel where he believed the child was waiting.
When he was arrested, Kimbrell was found to be in possession of two boxes of condoms, personal lubricant, and baby oil. Kimbrell was also in possession of a rhinestone key chain that spelled out “Princess,” which he had purchased as a gift for the child.
As a result of this conviction, Kimbrell faces a maximum sentence of not less than ten years and up to life in federal prison, a fine of $250,000, and supervised release of not less than five years and up to life. In addition to the supervised release, Kimbrell will be subject to federal and state sex offender registration requirements, which will apply throughout his life.
U.S. Attorney Fremin stated, “Justice was achieved today. The evidence presented at trial clearly established that the defendant took several steps to engage in sexual conduct with a minor and that he worked continuously to achieve his goal. This conviction illustrates that protecting our children from people like Jonathan Kimbrell will continue to be a top priority of this office. I commend the excellent work of the prosecutors and agents involved in this important matter, and we look forward to continuing to work with our law enforcement partners to aggressively pursue offenders who target the most vulnerable members of our community.”
Bryan A. Vorndran, FBI New Orleans Special Agent in Charge, stated, “Protecting children against predators is paramount. The FBI’s Baton Rouge Crimes Against Children and Human Trafficking Task Force intercepted Jonathan Kimbrell while he was enroute to meet an 11-year old child for the purposes of engaging in sex. The men and women of the FBI New Orleans Field Office will continue to aggressively pursue those who attempt to harm and exploit children.”
This matter is being handled by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Louisiana and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Frederick A. Menner, Jr. and Demetrius D. Sumner.