NORTH LITTLE ROCK MAN SENTENCED TO THIRTY YEARS FOR CHILD PORNOGRAPHY
Little Rock - Christopher R. Thyer, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, announced today the sentencing of Terry Lee Ward, age 59, formerly of North Little Rock, Arkansas. At the sentencing hearing held before the Honorable Billy Roy Wilson, Ward was sentenced to 360 months for production of child pornography and 120 months for possession of child pornography to be served concurrent with each other; however the thirty year sentence was ordered to run consecutive to Ward's undischarged state sentence.
"Protecting children from predators like the defendant is a priority in the Eastern District of Arkansas," stated Thyer. "This sentence insures that the defendant will serve the rest of his life in prison and will never again be able to harm or exploit children."
The proof at trial revealed that the defendant, who was driving a recreational vehicle (RV), was stopped in the early morning hours of August 24, 2004 in Crittenden County, Arkansas for expired tags and a burned out tail light. At the time of the traffic stop, the defendant was unable to produce any identification and was taken into custody. In investigating the identity of the defendant, law enforcement determined that the defendant was a suspect in a child rape case in Pulaski County, Arkansas. Further investigation revealed that the defendant was wanted in Indiana regarding child molestation offenses.
Subsequent to learning that information, a state search warrant was executed on the RV. During the course of the execution of that warrant computer equipment was seized. Two locked safes were also located in the RV. A federal search warrant for the computer equipment and the safes was obtained and executed. A forensic examination of the computer equipment revealed the existence of hundreds of images of child pornography. At trial, the United States introduced over 600 of those images. The images are of children from the age of infant/toddler to early teens and depict a variety of sex acts. Additionally, the search produced Mr. Ward's own home-made videotape depicting Mr. Ward with a naked minor female in his RV.
In April 2006, a jury in Pulaski County Circuit Court found Ward guilty of raping a then 11 year old female while he was living in his RV in North Little Rock, Arkansas. Ward was sentenced to life imprisonment and is currently housed at the Arkansas Department of Corrections.
The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Arkansas State Police. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Karen Whatley.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
Christopher R. Thyer
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