Kenneth Lewis Barrett, 71, the mayor of Winston, Oregon was arrested in a sting operation by police trying to nab pedophiles who prey on young children on the internet. For two weeks Barrett chatted with a police officer pretending to be a fourteen year old girl. At first he gave her what seemed like fatherly advice. Stay in school, work hard and stay away from boys who only want sex. As time went on, he began talking to “her” about sex and getting together to meet. He told her he was 71 but had the mind of a 17 year old and the energy of a 12 year old boy.
Barrett now faces charges of second-degree online sexual corruption and unlawful possession of a firearm, after apparently admitting to police that he did not have a concealed weapons permit for the gun.
The probable cause affidavit used by police, which led to Barrett’s arrest, revealed many details of his alleged interactions with the ‘girl.’
According to the sworn statement, Barrett and the ‘girl’ — a Myrtle Creek police officer in real life — started communicating via Facebook on March 5 when he posted a comment on a photo on the police decoy account. He allegedly said she was ‘hot.’
The mayor and the undercover officer exchanged messages for two weeks, with Barrett telling the “girl” that he loved her. They would talk about places they could meet such as a park or Mars, where they could populate the planet together. But he had also told the “girl” that he was exposed to Agent Orange in Viet Nam and could not get her pregnant. He also told her to help keep him out of jail by being quiet about their conversations.
After two weeks of Facebook messaging, Barrett and the decoy girl finally arranged to meet on Sunday in Myrtle Creek while the ‘girl’s’ mother was out at work.
According to the affidavit, Barrett again wrote about having sex with the ‘girl’ and asked her to ‘please keep me out of jail.’
On Sunday, at about 8.40pm according to police logs, when Barrett arrived at the designated location, he sent the decoy girl a message saying, ‘The bad boy is here’ — at which point cops pulled up in a squad car, flashing emergency lights.
Barrett has been officially charged with second-degree online sexual corruption and unlawful possession of a firearm.