MIDLAND, Texas (Nexstar)- Former Odessa firefighter Jeremy Lee Barrera, 36, today admitted in federal court to possessing child pornography and using his cell phone on the Odessa Fire Department network to access an online chat room where pornographic videos involving children were posted.
Appearing before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ronald Griffin in Midland, Barrera pleaded guilty to one count of possession of child pornography.
According to court records, agents conducting an online child sex exploitation investigation identified two local IP addresses used by an account registered to a “Ray Jones” to enter an encrypted online group chat whose members were viewing child pornography.
One IP address was registered to OFD Station #2; the other was registered to Barrera’s home.
On January 21 of this year, agents executed a search warrant at Barrera’s home.
During that search, agents seized the defendant’s cell phone. Forensics examination of the cell phone revealed the presence of multiple videos and images depicting minors engaged in sexually explicit activity.
“Individuals, such as Barrera, who send or receive child pornography revictimize children each time these illegal images are distributed online,” said Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent in Charge Erik P. Breizke, El Paso Division. “Child exploitation is one of the most serious crimes HSI investigates, because of the lasting physical and psychological damage inflicted on innocent and vulnerable victims, and we will continue to pursue these perpetrators and ensure serious consequences for their heinous crimes.”
Barrera is currently in federal custody. He faces up to 20 years in federal prison. A sentencing
date has yet to be scheduled.