TAMPA — A 24-year-old man was arrested after officials said he went to a shopping center in Citrus Park to arrange sex with a 10-year-old girl.
Christopher Michael Barnes of Tampa was being held without bail Friday on charges of using a computer to solicit a parent or guardian to consent to sex with a child, traveling to meet a minor and sexual battery.
Just after 9 a.m. Wednesday, Barnes went online and contacted a person he believed to be the mother of a 10-year-old, according to an arrest affidavit.
Through text messages and online chats, Barnes arranged to meet the parent and the child, officials said.
But when he arrived at 12601 Citrus Plaza Drive about 2:30 p.m., he was met instead by Florida Department of Law Enforcement officers and Hillsborough County Sheriff's deputies. He was arrested at the shopping center.
According to the affidavit, Barnes told the FDLE that he intended to have sex with the 10-year-old.
Barnes has no criminal history in Hillsborough County, according to jail records.
An undercover agent posing as a parent "stumbled across" Barnes on the internet, according to the FDLE.
Barnes is a civilian worker at a food shop at MacDill Air Force Base. The store manager declined to comment on the arrest.