Updates to our Terms of Use

We are updating our Terms of Use. Please carefully review the updated Terms before proceeding to our website.

Friday, July 12, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Fifty Years for Filming Sex Assault of Child

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (CN) - A Texan who filmed his sexual assault of a 7-year-old girl after her mother hired his girlfriend through a Craigslist babysitting ad was sentenced Wednesday to 50 years in federal prison.

Daniel Benson Billman Jr., 43, of Aransas Pass, pleaded guilty to producing child pornography on Jan. 4, 2016, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

Details of how Billman assaulted the girl in August 2015 came out during his plea hearing, prosecutors said.

"Billman and his girlfriend had placed an ad on Craigslist offering babysitting services. The victim's mother answered the ad and the girlfriend was supposed to care for the children. Instead, Billman sexually assaulted the 7-year-old girl in a hotel and in his girlfriend's Ford Explorer. He also recorded the crime," prosecutors said in a statement.

The girl confirmed the abuse and identified Billman, who confessed, U.S. Attorney Ken Magidson's office said. He was arrested in October 2015.

Billman has a lengthy rap sheet, prosecutors said: "Billman had 14 previous criminal convictions. Of those, five were for failing to register as a sex offender."

Police searched his home and cellphone and found more than 1,000 porn pictures of infants and toddlers, many of whom were bound in rope or duct tape, or shown in acts of bestiality.

Billman had also targeted another girl, prosecutors said.

A federal agent testified at Wednesday's hearing that authorities found text messages between Billman and the mother of an 11-year-old daughter.

"In the text messages, Billman requested nude photographs of the child, instructed the woman on how to take the photographs and instructed her on how to groom the child in order to entice her into having sex with Billman," prosecutors said.

U.S. District Judge Janis Graham Jack sentenced him to 600 months in prison, the statutory maximum, and told him she would have given him more time if she could.

If Billman lives to complete his prison sentence, Jack ordered him to spend the rest of his life on supervised release and to register as a sex offender. She also ordered him to pay $8,000 in restitution.

Categories / Uncategorized

Subscribe to Closing Arguments

Sign up for new weekly newsletter Closing Arguments to get the latest about ongoing trials, major litigation and hot cases and rulings in courthouses around the U.S. and the world.