Federal jury convicts Fort Worth man of enticing a child

FORT WORTH -- A Fort Worth man, who testified that he was "sad" when a 13-year-old girl he thought he had enticed to meet him over the Internet never showed up, has been convicted of enticement by a federal jury.

The girl turned out to be a Fort Worth undercover officer posing as the girl in an Internet chat room.

The jury reached its decision Monday in a Fort Worth federal courtroom against Robert M. Rhodes, 29, on a charge of enticement of a child.

Rhodes is scheduled to be sentenced July 9. He faces a maximum of life in prison, a $250,000 fine and a lifetime of supervision if he's released.

Rhodes has been in custody since his arrest in January.

Federal prosecutors presented evidence that the undercover officer was in a Yahoo! chat room in October when Rhodes made contact.

During several online chats, Rhodes described sexual acts he would like to do on the person he thought was a 13-year-old girl.

On Oct. 5, Rhodes contacted the "teen" and set up a meeting in a public location, according to evidence presented by prosecutors.

When Rhodes arrived, authorities arrested him.

During testimony Monday, Rhodes said he admitted that he believed he was going to meet a 13-year-old girl and he was "sad" when she did not show up, according to a news release from the U.S. attorney's office.

DOMINGO RAMIREZ JR., 817-390-7763