Damian Barton

ALPENA – Additional but unrelated sex crime charges have been brought against Damian Barton, 18, Alpena.

According to the Michigan State Police (MSP), troopers from the Alpena post began investigating Barton after an 8-year-old female family member disclosed that he had sexually assaulted her.

Authorities claim that the disclosure occurred after the child had been part of an inappropriate touching presentation at school, and later reported the touching to her mother.

The troopers’ investigation into the matter allegedly led to the discovery of additional evidence in support of the child’s statements.

Troopers submitted the case to the Alpena Prosecutor’s Office, which issued a felony warrant charging Barton with one count of  1st-degree criminal sexual conduct. If convicted as charged, he could face up to life in prison.

Barton – who was already in the Alpena County jail awaiting court on the felony charge of committing sex acts with an animal –  was served with the new warrant on April 24. He has since been arraigned in 88th District Court, and is being held on a $250,000 bond.

As reported in last week’s edition of this publication, MSP troopers were called to investigate a report on April 19 that a man had been caught on video while engaging in sex acts with a dog.

According to the MSP, the complainant advised she had been reviewing her home security video system when she witnessed the man, an associate of the family, engaging in the sex acts with her bull terrier/lab mix.

Troopers reviewed the video and spoke with witnesses.

The suspect, Barton, was subsequently arrested and lodged in the Alpena County jail. 

The case was sent to the Alpena County Prosecutor, who issued a felony warrant charging Barton with one count under 750.158. He was arraigned April 22 in 88th District Court.

An excerpt from the Michigan Penal Code regarding section 750.158 reads that any person who commits such a crime against nature with any animal shall be guilty of a felony, punishable by imprisonment in the state prison not more than 15 years. Or, if such person was at the time of the said offense a sexually delinquent person, the act may be punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for an indeterminate term, the minimum of which shall be one day and the maximum of which shall be life.