BELTRAMI COUNTY, Minn. - When a 5-year-old Beltrami County girl was kidnapped and sexually assaulted during the summer of 2016, it was headline news across Minnesota.

Her alleged attacker, Jacob Kinn, is still awaiting trial.

But KARE 11 Investigates has uncovered recordings in which Kinn admitted years ago that he had sexual fantasies about young children.

“Is there an age you consider too young; it just doesn’t do anything for you?” Kinn was asked by FBI Agent Matthew Zavala.

“Under six, I guess,” Kinn replied.

Kinn was interviewed by the FBI and Beltrami County Sheriff’s Department in 2012 as part of a child sexual exploitation investigation.

Kinn admitted during the taped interview that he’d been watching and sharing graphic videos of very young children being sexually assaulted and raped.

“How old do you think they are?” Investigator Scott Hinners with Beltrami County asked Kinn.

“No idea,” Kinn replied.

“Would you guess five, six, seven?” Hinners asked.

“I suppose,” responded Kinn.

“You know in your mind that these children you watched in these clips were say under the age of 10,” pushed Hinners.

“I guess so. Yes,” replied Kinn.

The admitted pedophile was convicted in 2013 of possession of child pornography and sentenced to 120 days in the local jail and probation, but not a single day in state prison.

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Now, the newly released recordings raise questions about whether those old interviews foreshadowed what was about to happen while Kinn was still on probation.

Jacob Kinn’s name exploded onto the headlines when a five-year-old girl disappeared during the summer of 2016.

A massive search was launched for the child when her babysitter, Melissa Norby, was found dead with her arms bound under a mattress in a burned out home. But there was no sign of the girl who was supposed to be spending the night there.

Investigators soon focused of Jacob Kinn who had been in a relationship with Norby.

According to police records, investigators found text messages indicating Kinn plotted with Norby to acquire the girl “for the purpose of sexually assaulting her.”

They tracked Kinn’s cellphone signal to a remote location where they found the girl in a pop-up camper in the woods. She was bound in duct tape and had been sexually assaulted, but was alive.

No charges have been filed so far in connection with Norby’s death or the fire at her home which is believed to be arson.

However, Kinn is awaiting trial, accused of kidnapping and sexual assault – something the 2012 tapes suggest he may have been fanaticizing about years earlier.

“You know in your mind that these children you watched in these clips were say under the age of 10?” asked Investigator Hinners.

“I guess so. Yes,” replied Kinn.

At one point in the interview he claimed the reason he watched the child rape videos was to relieve the urge to act out himself.

“I used to look at it, I guess, to relieve the want to do,” he told investigators.

Cases like Kinn’s and others exposed by KARE 11 Investigates in recent months are prompting some state lawmakers to consider toughening Minnesota’s child pornography and sex offender sentencing policies which critics describe as among the weakest in the nation.

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