Sex offender accused of assaulting boy at library

November 17, 2010 3:17:39 AM PST
A six-year-old boy and his older brother were preparing to go to swim lessons when they say a man attacked the younger brother in a public bathroom stall. It happened at the Freed-Montrose Library in Montrose. The court appearance was quick, as Michael Joseph Snowden, 21, was charged with aggravated sexual assault of a child and then taken back to jail. The crime allegedly happened Friday at the Freed-Montrose Library inside the men's restroom.

According to the Harris County District Attorney's Office, a six-year-old boy and his nine-year-old brother were told to go inside by their father to change into swim clothes for swimming lessons. The six-year-old was alone inside a stall when Snowden allegedly walked inside.

Harris County Assistant District Attorney Marizta Antu said, "The little boy began to scream and one of the employees heard it and came in and took out the boys and locked Snowden inside, then called the police."

According to the DA's office, Snowden was viewing pornography at a computer at the library, even thought the computers were supposed to have filters blocking access to porn. Houston library officials didn't know about the allegations until we told them, and are now launching their own investigation.

"At this point, we are checking into this to see if this actually happened," said Sandra Fernandez with the Houston Public Library. "We are investigating what happened."

This is not Snowden's first arrest. He was convicted in 2005 for aggravated sexual assault. In 2008 he was convicted of failure to register as a sex offender. This year, Snowden was convicted of prostitution and in April, convicted a second time for failure to register as a sex offender and resisting arrest.

We talked to one mother who says she always monitors her children in public.

"I never send them in (a public restroom) alone," said parent Tammi Collier.

Snowden's bail has been set at $50,000.


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