A McAllen man was sentenced to 10 years in federal custody with a 20-year term of supervised release for attempting to coerce a federal agent posing as a 13-year-old girl to engage in sexual activity after meeting her at a public park.
Dassahed Marines, 29, was also accused of ramming a vehicle driven by the special agent who was trying to arrest him.
Marines appeared before U.S. District Judge Rolando Olvera on Wednesday for sentencing in Brownsville. He accepted a cold plea offered by government prosecutors in which he pleaded guilty to using the internet and a cell phone to persuade, induce, and entice an individual he knew was a minor.
The second count, charging Marines with assaulting a Homeland Security Investigations agent with his vehicle, was dismissed.
According to a criminal complaint, Marines began messaging an undercover Special Agent of the Rio Grande Valley Child Exploitation Investigations Task Force in the applications Whisper and KIK.
The document stated that Marines knowingly enticed a 13-year-old minor female to engage in sex acts. In the apps, he used the username “brotendo” and “downtochillbro.”
On Dec. 7, 2018, Marines used KIK in an attempt to entice an undercover special agent he believed to be a 13-year-old female in McAllen for the purpose of engaging in sex acts, according to the document.
According to the complaint, Marines messaged that he had arrived at a public park and encouraged the minor to get in his car. Upon his arrest, the man struck the special agent’s vehicle head on. He resisted arrest aggressively.
On Wednesday, the man’s attorney argued that letters of recommendation from his mother, father, and girlfriend spoke to the quality of the man’s character prior to his arrest.
The lawyer called the conviction “life-changing” and noted that Marines studied design and won’t be able to use the internet without the permission of his probation officer once released, as he’ll be required to register as a sex offender.
Marines told Olvera that he was ashamed of his actions and apologized to the country, to his family, and to his girlfriend.
He was sentenced to the mandatory minimum of 120 months, or 10 years in prison. After he completes the decade-long term, he will spend 20 years on supervised release.
The fines included in Marines’ conviction were waived due to his inability to pay.
Marines will be required to register under the requirements of the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act as directed by his probation officer, the Bureau of Prisons, and any state sex offender registration agency.