Bowie Man Sentenced to over 7 Years for Possessing and Distributing Child Pornography

October 20, 2011

Greenbelt, Maryland - U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams, Jr. sentenced John Shutt, age 65, of Bowie, Maryland, today to 90 months in prison, followed by supervised release for life, for possessing and distributing child pornography. Judge Williams ordered that upon his release from prison, Shutt must register as a sex offender in the place where he resides, where he is an employee, and where he is a student, under the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA).

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein and Special Agent in Charge William Winter of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations.

According to Shutt’s plea agreement, on February 7 and 8, 2010, an individual using a specific screen name, later identified as Shutt, distributed images depicting children engaged in sexually explicit conduct to an illegal website where users could distribute and download child pornography. Following his identification, a search warrant was executed at Shutt’s residence on September 17, 2010, and computers and other digital media were seized. Subsequent forensic examination of the computers and hard drives revealed approximately 1,483 images and 32 videos of child pornography. During the search, Shutt admitted that he had downloaded and possessed child pornography for over 15 years and also traded images with others he met online.

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 Details about Maryland’s program are available at

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended ICE - Homeland Security Investigations for its work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Special Assistant U.S. Attorney LisaMarie Freitas, assigned from the Department of Justice Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, who prosecuted the case.

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