GRANITE CITY MAN CHARGED WITH CHILD PORNOGRAPHY OFFENSES
A Granite City man was arraigned in federal court on May 25, 2011, on a five-count Indictment charging him with Enticement of a Minor, Distribution of Child Pornography, Transfer of Obscene Matter to a Minor, Receipt of Child Pornography, and Possession of Child Pornography, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today.
If convicted on Count 1, Christopher H. McCoy, 48, of Granite City, Ill.-, faces a term of imprisonment of not less than ten (10) years up to life, and a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life. If convicted on Count 2, McCoy faces a term of imprisonment of not less than five (5) years but not more than twenty (20) years, and a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life. If convicted on Count 3, McCoy faces a term of imprisonment of not more than ten (10) years, a fine up to $250,000, or both, and a term of supervised release of not more than three (3) years. If convicted on Count 4, McCoy faces a term of imprisonment of not less than five (5) years but not more than twenty (20) years, and a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life. If convicted on Count 5, McCoy faces a term of imprisonment of not more than ten (10) years, and a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life. McCoy’s trial is scheduled for July 18, 2011, in Federal Court in East St. Louis. McCoy was ordered held without bond pending trial.
The violations charged in Counts 1 through 3 occurred between on or about February 20 and February 27, 2010, when McCoy chatted with an undercover officer (UC) in New Hampshire that McCoy believed to be a 14 year old boy. During the chats, McCoy asked the person he believed to be a 14 year old boy to send nude pictures of himself masturbating, fingering his anus, and peeing. McCoy eventually sent the boy a digital camera and cell phone so that the boy could take the pictures and send them to McCoy. Also during the chats, McCoy sent videos of child pornography to the UC posing as the 14 year old boy. Finally, during one chat, McCoy sent the person he believed to be a 14 year old boy a close-up picture of McCoy’s nude penis.
After the New Hampshire police contacted the Granite City Police Department, officers contacted the defendant at his residence. McCoy consented to a search of his residence, as well the seizure of a laptop, various DVDs, and a thumb drive. A forensic analysis of these devices revealed images of child pornography on the laptop, the thumb drive, and some of the DVDs. Many of the images involved infants and toddlers engaged in sexually explicit behavior, as well as images of bestiality. Several of the images were downloaded and transferred to the thumb drive on November 9, 2006, to include the image charged in Count 4 of the Indictment. The thumb drive alone contained approximately 1,500 images and 2 videos of child pornography. In addition, one of the seized DVDs, which the defendant had in his possession in his home on May 5, 2011, contained approximately 233 videos of child pornography. This DVD is the subject of Count 5 of the Indictment.
An indictment is merely the method by which federal charges are lodged. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
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.
The case was investigated by the Keene, New Hampshire, Police Department, the Granite City Police Department, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Metro East Cyber Crimes and Analysis Task Force. The case is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney Angela Scott.