Jacksonville, Florida – Acting United States Attorney Karin Hoppmann announced today that Garrett Eric Weber (30, Green Cove Springs) has been arrested and indicted by a federal grand jury for attempting to entice a 9-year-old child to engage in sexual activity, and for soliciting and distributing child sexual abuse videos using the internet. If convicted on all charges, Weber faces a minimum mandatory penalty of 15 years, and up to life, in federal prison, a $1 million fine, and a potential life term of supervised release. Weber was arrested on a federal warrant by the Green Cove Springs Police Department during a traffic stop on July 5, 2021. He was detained without bond on July 7, 2021.
According to court documents and evidence proffered at Weber’s detention hearing, in June 2020, Weber, using the name “BUBBLESXD_90,” uploaded an image depicting the sexual abuse of a child to a chat group on a popular social media application (app). Further investigation ultimately resulted in the identification of Weber.
Beginning in March 2021, an undercover FBI agent, posing as the parent of a young child, engaged in online conversation with Weber using the app. After some discussion and being told that the “child” was only nine years old, Weber offered to serve as the “child’s” trainer by engaging in sexual activity with the “child.” He requested that the “parent” take an explicit photo of the “child” for him, and he provided specific instructions on how to accomplish this through various means. On at least seven occasions, Weber sent the “parent” videos over the internet that depicted the sexual abuse of young children in an effort to demonstrate exactly how he planned to molest the “child.”
An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
This case was investigated by the Green Cove Springs Police Department, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Winnebago County (Wisconsin) Sheriff’s Office, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Milwaukee and Jacksonville, with assistance from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney D. Rodney Brown.
It is another case brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.