A 29-year-old Monmouth County man has been arrested on charges in connection with luring and endangering the welfare of a child, Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni said on Tuesday.
Barton Cross-Tierney II, of Franklin Avenue in Ocean Township, was charged with second-degree luring, two counts of second-degree endangering the welfare of a child for debauching the morals of a child, and two counts of third-degree promoting obscenity to a minor.
Throughout 2018, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office received multiple cybertips regarding a participant of Discord, an online chat platform that allows for text exchanges, voice communications and video chats, engaging in inappropriate conversations with underage girls.
In December of 2018, a juvenile female contacted the FBI tipline and reported that she had engaged in an inappropriate online relationship with an adult male from Ocean, with the Discord username “Barton Cross.” An investigation revealed that Barton Cross committed sexual acts while in a video chat with the juvenile victim.
A subsequent investigation conducted by members of Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office Computer Crimes Unit, the Ocean Township Police department, members of the ICAC Task Force, and the FBI determined “Barton Cross” to be Barton C. Cross-Tierney.
If convicted of the third-degree crimes, Cross-Tierney faces a sentence of up to five years in New Jersey state prison on each charge. If convicted of the second-degree crime, Cross-Tierney faces a sentence of up to 10 years in New Jersey state prison.
Despite this arrest, law enforcement authorities continue to seek names of other potential victims that belonged to the Discord group created by Barton Cross.
Anyone with additional information about this case is asked to contact Detective Tiffany Lenart of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office at 1-800-533-7443, or the FBI in Newark at 973-792-3000.
— Edited press release from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office