Predator convinces woman with Down Syndrome to send nudes, gets 6 days in jail
TROY, Mich. (WJBK) - A sexual predator targeted a 20-year-old woman from Troy and convinced her to send him nude pictures. He was sentenced Thursday to just 6 days in jail.
Dawn and Mark Hayes say Demetrius Barry targeted their 20-year-old daughter, who functions below her age level. The Troy woman has Down Syndrome and, as Mark explains, she was vulnerable.
"She doesn't understand why somebody would take advantage of her like this and it's really got her spirits down. She loves the social media friends she has...but at this point, doesn't know who (she) can trust and why would somebody do this to (her). Instead of her being sunshine, we have to pick her up right now. It's been hard to watch and very difficult for a lot of us," he said.
Dawn and Mark call Barry an online predator who targeted her and got her send nude pictures of herself. They said he even knew she had developmental disabilities.
"The predator outsmarted her by saying and I quote 'I'm gonna teach you something'. I will never forget the shock I felt when I discovered that violating conversation and photos that left my head spinning," Dawn said in court on Thursday.
Friends and family of the victim filled the Oakland County Courthouse and they were all dressed in yellow shirts that read 'protect the vulnerable' to stand with the victim.
"The day we discovered this it was snowy, cold April 15th dark day and it's stayed dark for months now and we chose yellow because we figure brighter days have to be ahead of us. We discovered that, in Michigan, adults with development delays are not protected by any state law. So we're determined to write a law, push it through and get adults with disabilities that are involved in any sex crimes at all...that they have an easier process than we had to get to here today," Dawn said.
The judge says Barry had no previous criminal record but says it was clear that he asked the victim for nude pictures. He was convicted of using a computer for immoral purposes and was sentenced Thursday to 6 days in the Oakland County Jail, probation, community service, and must undergo a mental health evaluation.