Fruitland Man Pleads Guilty to Producing Pornographic Video and Pictures of a Neighborhood Child
Enticed a Young Girl Into his Home to Produce Nude Pictures
Baltimore, Maryland - Russell Glenn Burnett, age 44, of Fruitland, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to producing child pornography.
The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Wicomico County Sheriff Mike Lewis; Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Chief Michael Phillips of the Fruitland Police Department; and Wicomico County State’s Attorney Davis Ruark.
According to the plea agreement, in late April, 2009, Fruitland Police Department officers began an investigation into sexual assaults against several minors in Fruitland, Maryland. Several children and adults were interviewed and it became apparent that Burnett had inappropriately touched some of the children. The police also learned that Burnett had photographs of some of the children in unclothed or partially unclothed states.
A search warrant was obtained and when police arrived at Burnett’s residence, Burnett was upstairs disassembling one of his computers. The police seized several computers and peripheral devices, storage media and associated items. Forensic reviews of the material revealed, among other images of child pornography, a video recording made in June 2005 of one of the neighborhood minor females known to Burnett. Burnett had enticed her to come into his house and to his third floor computer room to produce pornographic images of her. The girl is seen undressing and the camera focuses on her genital region. Burnett is clearly visible in this video clip. Moreover, in some of the still images found on the computer media seized, Burnett is seen touching the girl’s inner thigh and body.
As part of his plea agreement, Burnett is required to forfeit all items seized from his residence, as well as his interest in the residence.
Burnett faces a minimum sentence of 15 years and a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, followed by supervised release up to life. U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles, Jr. has scheduled sentencing for July 7, 2010, at 1:00 p.m. Burnett is currently incarcerated upon his conviction in state court of three counts of sexual assault and sentenced to 30 years in prison, with 15 years suspended.
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 http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/md/Safe-Childhood/index.html.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney P. Michael Cunningham, who is prosecuting the case.