Maryland Man Pleads Guilty to Distributing Child Pornography And Enticing a Minor to Engage in Sex

Kept a List of Strategies to Lure Children Into Having Sex with Adults;
Arrested With Young Maryland Girl’s Name and Phone Number Written on His Hand

November 10, 2008

Baltimore, Maryland - David Christopher Cross, age 34, of Middle River, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to distributing and possessing child pornography, and to enticing a minor to engage in sex, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.

“David Cross used both old-fashioned and high-tech methods to find victims, by talking to some children at the local swimming pool and by contacting others through the internet.” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “If your child uses the internet without supervision, predators like David Cross will find them.”

According to his guilty plea, Baltimore County Police received a complaint in October 2007 that a subscriber to AOL claimed to have had sex with a 16 year old boy. The subscriber was identified as Cross. Police established an undercover AOL screen name and contacted Cross through Instant Messenger on October 31, posing as a 13 year old boy. Cross inquired about having sex with the 13 year old boy. In another chat session on November 1, 2007, Cross asked to meet with the boy.

Further investigation revealed that the Maryland State Police Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force had received a complaint regarding an Instant Messenger chat session between Cross and another user. Cross began the session by sending sexually explicit pictures and asked the user to meet to have sex. Cross stated that he had had sex with a nine year old.

On November 8, 2007, Baltimore County police searched Cross’s residence and seized his computer, which revealed pictures documenting the sexual abuse of young children, including intercourse between children and adults, and emails sent by Cross distributing the pictures.

Police also seized from Cross’s safe a seven page document entitled “Places to do it” which described various methods to trick children into following adults into isolated places and to encourage them to have sexual contact with adults.

At the time of search, Cross had the name of a nine year old girl written in ink on his palm with a Maryland telephone number. In his plea agreement, Cross admitted that during an outing to a local pool in the summer of 2007, Cross had inappropriately touched the girl. He also admitted that he had inappropriately touched the girl’s sister on multiple occasions from 1997 to 2002 when she was six to ten years old.

Cross faces a minimum mandatory sentence of five years in prison for distributing child pornography, a minimum mandatory sentence of 10 years in prison for enticing a minor, and a maximum of 10 years in prison for possessing child pornography, followed by supervised release for life. U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett has scheduled sentencing for January 23, 2009 at 2:00 p.m.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices, 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 identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit.



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