Thornton man accused of sexually assaulting 3 young girls gets plea deal, faces 18 to 32 years in prison

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Matthew Paul Barnett. Credit: 17th Judicial District Attorney’s Office

ADAMS COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — A Thornton man pleaded guilty Monday to attempted sexual assault on a child and first-degree assault, according to the 17th Judicial District Attorney’s Office.

Matthew Paul Barnett, 34, pleaded guilty as part of an agreement that calls for a stipulated sentence of 18 to 32 years in prison, according to the DA’s office.

Barnett allegedly assaulted three 6- and 7-year-old girls. Initial allegations were made while Barnett was in Winter Park. However, the investigation revealed more incidents in Adams County.

Barnett was arrested in April 2019 while working as a TSA agent at Denver International Airport.

He was originally charged with 12 counts: three counts of sexual assault on a child, three counts of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust, two counts of sexual assault on a child as a pattern of abuse and four counts of committing an aggravated sex offense, a sentencing enhancer.

The case was prosecuted in Adams County.

Barnett is scheduled to be sentenced May 1.

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