Expert: Barrow child sex assault case has similarities to Jerry Sandusky situation

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David Jacobs Barrow (Photo: Madison County Jail)

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT ) – The child sexual abuse case against a former Guntersville volunteer soccer coach has a lot of similarities to another recent high-profile case, that of former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky.

According to the executive director of the National Children’s Advocacy Center in Huntsville, it is common for accused child sexual predators to work or volunteer in places that place them in close proximity to children.

David Barrow now faces charges in Madison and Marshall counties includes 24 counts of production of child pornography, one count of possession of child pornography and one count of aggravated criminal surveillance.

“This case reminds us of the Jerry Sandusky  case,  some of his (Barrow)’s behavior, someone who volunteers his time to have access to kids,” NCAC Executive Director Chris Newlin says. “I don’t know necessarily the role that all the things that happened there necessary or can’t comment about them, but there are many similarities,” Newlin added.

Barrow served as a volunteer high school soccer coach and was well-known and respected in the local soccer community.


Guntersville Police Chief Jim Peterson says the charges  are based on evidence found during a search of Barrow’s Guntersville home. “Some of the evidence that was recovered at that time has been under analysis since then and this week it has been discovered that we are going to have victims here in the city of Guntersville,” he says.

Law enforcement sources say there is still a lot of evidence to process and more charges may be pending.”I think the facts are bearing out that what happened in Madison County are not unique, and we believe there are going to be other crimes that are committed maybe not just here but other places.”

Marshall County District Attorney Steve Marshall says if Barrow is convicted the charges in Marshall County alone are punitive. “He’s charged right now with 25 Class A felonies which are going to range from ten to life, and then we have possession of child pornography which will be a lower offense,” he says.

He says the investigation is far from over “We’re still not done. In fact, I would say we’re not even close to being finished until the forensic examination is completed to know exactly where we stand,” Marshall says.

Huntsville Police re-arrested Barrow on Wednesday and charged him with sodomy, human trafficking and sexual abuse of a child less than 12 years old.

His first arrest was in May shortly after coaching the Guntersville High School girls’ varsity team at the state soccer semifinals in Huntsville.  That arrest was also for charges of sexual abuse and human trafficking.

Click here for WHNT News 19′s previous reports on David Barrow.