Chelsea Marie Robinson, alleged solicitor of a sexual liaison with a minor female 16 years of age who does not, in fact, exist…
Bosqueville – Kimberly Robinson’s words blaze through the monitor like a single long, drawn-out exclamation point in a cartoon balloon.
Her daughter Chelsea, who is 22 years old, is under indictment for the online solicitation of a minor – a sixteen year old female who never, ever really existed, other than in a texting fantasy between herself and a male police officer .
Though Chelsea Marie Robinson engaged in more than 36 hours of on-line texting prior to her October 20, 2014 arrest – a tantalizing, sexually explicit conversation held on-line with a picture of an attractive young woman depicted on CraigsList, the minor female’s real identity is that of Deputy Bradley Bond, McLennan County Sheriff’s Office, Badge Number 9170.
Under the law, it doesn’t matter if the meeting for sex never took place, that the entire affair was a fantasy, or that the minor thus solicited was actually some hairy-legged cop on a smart phone.
It’s a horrendous charge, a third degree felony that could net a conviction requiring a lifetime of registration as a sex offender, not less than two years or more than 10 years imprisonment, and/or a fine of $10,000.
Prosecutors must prove that the defendant knowingly and intentionally engaged in the solicitation. The indictment reads thusly, that Chelsea did, “then and there, with the intent, that 16-year-old female, a minor, would engage in sexual contact or sexual intercourse, or deviate sexual intercourse with the Defendant, knowingly solicit over the Internet, or by text message the said 16 year old female to meet the Defendant.”
Chelsea’s name and picture have been prominently displayed on newspaper pages and in broadcasts. Sheriff Parnell McNamara trumpted the information that dozens of sexual predators scheduled assignations with minors after school, arranged to meet them in shopping centers and parking lots.
As vile as all that may seem, there are some alternate, hard and true facts to consider when it comes to the case against Chelsea Robinson.
It’s really a cultural offense as much as a criminal charge, and here’s why.
For 36 long hours, Chelsea Robinson spoke with a person who doesn’t really exist, as depicted and represented by a police officer, about engaging in a legal sexual liaison between consenting adults in the privacy of their home.
The Craigs List chat room where the offense took place in cyberspace carries a registration process in which participants must certify that they are of a lawful age – 18 years of age – to involve themselves in sexual liaisons in the privacy of a home or lawful residence..
To get in the virtual chat room, Bond would have had to assert that the virtual girl he was impersonating was actually of a lawful age of consent. That’s where the entire affair begins to resemble some episode from Alice In Wonderland. It makes one wonder, just what kind of mushrooms did the cheshire cat really eat, and what is he smoking in that hookah rig?
Forging onward, the record supports the fact that Chelsea engaged in sexually explicit conversation, at one point assuring her young female lover that she intended to “rock your f____ing world…I’m going to make sure my (vagina) is nice and soft for you…”, according to an affidavit of probable cause presented to a magistrate in support of an arrest warrant.
It was only in the last few minutes prior to the arranged 5:30 p.m. meeting between the two in the parking lot of a Home Depot store in Lacy-Lakeview that the fantasy lover revealed that “she” was only 16 years of age.
Chelsea is reported to have responded that “Sixteen will get you twenty,” and added that she did not believe it was the truth.
According to her mother, “She said, ‘Mom, I know I was really stupid, but I swear I didn’t believe her. I didn’t believe she was only 16…'”
One can only speculate that if at that point, she had decided to back out, declined to go through with the meeting, and made it a part of the official record that she could not become involved with an underage partner in the planned assignation between herself, her husband, and the fantasy cyber-lover manufactured out of thin air and cyphers imprinted on a silicon chip, no arrest would have taken place.
As it occurred, the moment she rolled onto the parking lot at Home Depot, “about 20 police cars swooped on her,” according to her mother.
Kimberly Blackburn Robinson, her mother, is a woman whose felony probation was recently extended for another four years due to some violation; she is frantic with worry about what could happen to the kids in the family if both she and her daughter are imprisoned at the same time.
“I sent her attorney an e-mail and told him that we are not taking a plea deal we are ready fight this as far as we need to that anything less than a dismissal is unexceptable (sic). This will ruin the rest of her life…”
It’s already had a great impact. Chelsea lost her 39-hour-a-week job clerking in a Valero Corner Store, she and her old man got kicked out of the rental where they lived with their two kids, and she has only just lately arranged new employment. The boyfriend is long gone.
Her mother writes, “According to the attorney, he has filed a motion for discovery and that’s what he was waiting on. If he has received it or not is anyone’s guess…”
To take the guess work out of the equation, a check of the file in the District Clerk’s office shows that Charles W. McDonald, the attorney court-appointed by 54th District Judge Matt Johnson, has so far made no such filing – or any other – since making an appearance at an arraignment hearing held in February in which Chelsea posted a $5,000 post-indictment bond.
Judge Johnson’s name comes up again in Kimberly Robinson’s on-line narrative. In a note in which she lamented her demurral on an errand to the courthouse to see if any discovery motion has been filed, she said, “I had to 2 get my son taken care of! However, I suppose in reality, there are other reasons, I suppose I didn’t want to admit. If I could speak to you, off the record, I would like to explain. As you stated, some of these people could hurt you if they wanted to, or even worse, they can be dangerous. In some ways that’s what I worry about! (Off record) I am worried if I stir up the wrong thing they could could make it really hard on me. I am on felony probation. Matt Johnson was the judge, they have already tried to revoke me, and succeeded once, 5 weeks before my release date. They took me off of adjudicated probation and gave me 4 more years regular probation. And I’m walking a fine line they told me…” She later gave her assent to allow her remarks to be quoted in this article.
She explains she is not a lawyer, that she doesn’t know or understand the arcana of the court’s procedures. Asked why should she – why would that be necessary, she is at a loss for words. Nonplussed. Speechless.
There may be a very good reason for the delay in a motion for discovery. Word around the camp fire is that the dozens of online solicitation cases so triumphantly trumpeted a few months ago by Sheriff McNamara may be ill-prepared to withstand the rigors of pre-trial maneuvering.
According to a retired law enforcement official with subject matter expertise, an individual who requested anonymity, “People who do these kinds of on-line solicitation cases are very particular. They always use just one device – a smart phone or a hard drive or a computer – for each case,” he explained. “You see, if an attorney moves for discovery of the evidence and the judge grants the motion, the order may very well turn out to include all the cases made so far on all the indictments, if they’re on the same hard drive…It’s a prosecutor’s nightmare.”
He agreed that commingling evidence of on-line culpability is not the most professional method when it comes to successful prosecution of these types of offense.
To read up on another case in which prosecutors declined prosecution on an indictment for a first degree felony assault charge after a three-year delay in a motion for discovery following an agreed order for the same, follow this link:
Words fail. The mind boggles.
So mote it be.
– The Legendary