GRANITE CITY MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO CHILD PORNOGRAPHY OFFENSES
A Granite City man pled guilty in federal court on September 19, 2011, to a five-count Indictment charging him with Enticement of a Minor (Count 1), Distribution of Child Pornography (Count 2), Transfer of Obscene Matter to a Minor (Count 3), Receipt of Child Pornography (Count 4), and Possession of Child Pornography (Count 5), the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today. Sentencing for Christopher H. McCoy, 48, of Granite City, IL, after his guilty pleas, is scheduled for January 13, 2012, in East St. Louis, Illinois. McCoy will continue to be held without bond pending his sentencing.
At sentencing, McCoy faces, on Count 1, a term of imprisonment of not less than ten (10) years up to life, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life; on Count 2, McCoy faces a term of imprisonment of not less than five (5) years but not more than twenty (20) years, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life; 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; on Count 4, McCoy faces a term of imprisonment of not less than five (5) years but not more than twenty (20) years, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life; and, on Count 5, McCoy faces a term of imprisonment of not more than ten (10) years, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life.
As revealed at his guilty plea hearing, 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 engaging in sexually explicit conduct. McCoy eventually sent the boy a digital camera and cell phone so that the individual that he believed to be a 14 year old 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 genitals. After identifying McCoy as the person speaking with the UC, the New Hampshire police contacted the Granite City Police Department.
The violations referenced in Counts 4 and 5 of the indictment occurred after officers contacted McCoy at his residence and seized multiple media devices, including, but not limited to, a laptop, various DVDs, and a thumb drive. A forensic analysis of these devices revealed approximately 1,500 images and 235 videos of child pornography on the laptop, the thumb drive, and some of the DVDs. Several of the images were downloaded and transferred to the thumb drive on November 9, 2006, and included the image charged in Count 4 of the Indictment. The DVD that is the subject of Count 5 of the Indictment, which McCoy had in his possession in his home on May 5, 2011, contained numerous videos of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
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.