Baltimore Man Posing as a Teenager on the Internet Pleads Guilty to Receiving Child Pornography
Defendant Pretended to be a Teenager and Asked Children to Send Sexual Photographs
Baltimore, Maryland - Douglas Lee Patrick, age 39, of Baltimore, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to receiving images depicting minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
The plea was announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge William Winter of Homeland Security Investigations; Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Chief James W. Johnson of the Baltimore County Police Department; and Baltimore County State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger.
“Douglas Lee Patrick is a 39 year old man who pretended to be an 18 year old girl and developed romantic relationships with children over the internet,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “This case is a chilling reminder that people who chat on the internet often lie about who they are.”
According to Patrick’s plea agreement, from December 2008 to March 2009, Patrick posed on MyYearbook.com as an 18 year old lesbian named “Leah” who was suffering from cancer, in order to obtain pictures of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct. Many of the minor females believed that they were in a romantic relationship with “Leah.” Patrick, in his role as “Leah,” solicited the minor females to transmit pictures of their genital area over the internet.
A search warrant was executed at Patrick’s house on March 4, 2009. Four videos and 100 images depicting the sexual abuse of children were seized from his computer.
Patrick faces a minimum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. As part of the plea agreement, the defendant and the government have agreed to a sentence of 122 months in prison followed by supervised release for life. U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett scheduled sentencing for January 3, 2011 at 10:00 a.m.
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. Details about Maryland’s program are available at www.justice.gov/usao/md/Safe-Childhood/index.html.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised Homeland Security Investigations, the FBI, the Baltimore County Police Department and the Baltimore County State’s Attorney’s Office for their assistance in this investigation and prosecution. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Bonnie S. Greenberg, who is prosecuting the case.