News and Press Releases

Panama City Man Sentenced To 100 Months Imprisonment For Receipt Of Child Pornography From the Internet

January 4, 2012

PANAMA CITY, FLORIDA – Timothy Sorrell, 63, of Panama City, was sentenced today to serve 100 months in federal prison for receiving child pornography over the internet.

In December 2010, Bay County Sheriff’s Investigators began conducting an investigation into the downloading of child pornography via the internet. Files were identified by investigators that contained graphic images of children engaged in sexual activity, some less than 10 years of age.

On January 11, 2011, members of the Bay County Sheriff's Office Criminal & Special Investigations Division, along with agents from ICE / Homeland Security Investigations, executed a search warrant at a residence in the Cedar Grove area of Panama City. When entry was made into the home, a computer was found in the process of downloading files of child pornography. The occupant of the home, Timothy Sorrell, was taken into custody.

Sorrell was indicted by a federal grand jury on February 15, 2001, and charged with Distribution and Receipt of Child Pornography. On August 17, 2011, Sorrell pled guilty to the charges.
In addition to the 100 month term of imprisonment imposed today, U.S. District Judge Richard Smoak sentenced Sorrell to serve 15 years on supervised release, following his release from prison. Upon his release, Sorrell will also be required to register as a sex offender.

In announcing the court’s sentence, Pamela C. Marsh, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Florida stated: “Protecting children from sexual exploitation is one of the highest priorities of
the Department of Justice and this Office. We will continue our partnership with our state, local, and federal law enforcement agents to ensure that offenders are prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”

Ms. Marsh had grateful commendations for agents of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations (ICE HSI) and the Bay County Sheriff’s Office, whose joint investigation led to Sorrell's conviction and sentence.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched by the Department of Justice in May 2006 to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gayle E. Littleton.

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