HOUSTON, Texas – A member of the Kansas National Guard pleaded guilty in a federal court Galveston, Texas for transporting a minor across state lines for the purposes of having sex. The sexual relations with the young female occurred on a Carnival Cruise Ship in March.
Paul Francis Grimm, 43, from Wichita, Kansas flew a girl under the age of 18 from her home in Ohio to Houston in order to take her on a Carnival Cruise Ship according to a federal complaint attached below. Grimm used to live in Ohio and his daughter was friends with the girl identified in the complaint as HW. She is the same age as Grimm’s daughter. The complaint states Grimm told HW’s mother he was taking his children on the cruise and wanted KW to come along with them. He did not bring his children.
Upon departing from the cruise ship at the end of the cruise, officials of the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) became suspicious of Grimm who was traveling with a young girl who did not have the same last name. CBP agents separated the two and questioned them. During questioning HW admitted she had sexual relations with Grimm one time and oral sex two times during the cruise.
HW told CPB agents she met Grimm when he and his children lived in Ohio, where she was from. She was friends with Grimm’s daughter who is the same age as she is. Agents questioning Grimm said he denied any sexual relations with the girl. While searching his cell phone they found nude pictures of HW. During a search of Grimm’s luggage CBP agents found numerous condoms, a dildo, a penis pump and sexual lubricant. Grimm was not cooperative and would not talk about the photos or the other sexual items discovered according to the complaint. Grimm and HW were turned over to the FBI for further investigation.
Grimm had moved from Ohio to Kansas about two years ago according to the complaint. Grimm remained in contact with HW via text messages and phone calls. “Over time, their relationship became flirtatious and on several occasions they sent each other naked pictures of themselves via text messages.
HW said that Grimm asked her on Valentine’s Day if she wanted to go on a cruise with him and she said yes. They decided to tell her mother that Grimm was taking his children on the cruise and that she wanted to go with them. Her mother agreed. Grimm then purchased an airline ticket to fly HW from Cleveland, Ohio to Houston, Texas. He also paid for two tickets on the cruise ship.
On March 23rd, HW flew to Houston Intercontinental Airport where Grimm picked her up and drove her to Galveston where they stayed at the Hilton on the Seawall Hotel. On that Monday they boarded the cruise ship Triumph. Due to the oil spill which occurred in the Houston Ship Channel at that time, the departure was delayed until Tuesday morning. HW told the FBI agents she had sex with Grimm once and had oral sex twice during the cruise.
The defendant admitted to the FBI that he met HW through his daughter. He said HW had “a troubled upbringing and he wanted to be a mentor or father figure to her.” He admitted telling HW’s mother he was taking his children on the cruise but that he did not bring them. He also admitted purchasing the cruise ship tickets two to three weeks in advance of the cruise and that he paid for her airline ticket to fly from Cleveland to Houston.
When asked by the FBI what they would find in his cell phone, Grimm admitted having nude photos of HW and said he should have deleted them. He denied having sexual relations with HW. He said the sexual paraphernalia found in his luggage was because he was “a single man and that he may meet someone on the cruise.” At that time he finally asked to speak to an attorney and questioning stopped.
FBI agents in Cleveland interviewed HW’s mother who said she was told Grimm was taking his children on the cruise for Spring Break and they wanted HW to come along. She said she trusted Grimm and allowed her daughter to go on the trip.
Grimm remained in custody from his time of arrest until pleading guilty to the charge of transporting a minor across state lines for the purposes of having sex in a Galveston federal court on November 4th. He will appear before District Court Judge Gregg Costa on January 20th, at 2 p.m. for sentencing.
Grimm served in the Kansas Air National Guard according to an article in the Wichita Eagle by Rick Plumlee. Grimm was on military leave at the time of the incident with HW. In May he was fired from his full-time job at McConnell Air Force Base near Wichita where he worked as a facilities manager for the Guard’s 184th Intelligence Wing. He had previously served on active duty in the U.S. Air Force for thirteen years.
National Guard Spokesperson Sharon Watson said that Grimm would be kicked out of the military. It was not clear what process would be used to accomplish this. It is possible Grimm could face Court Martial in addition to his federal court prosecution.
Bob Price is a staff writer and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.