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NEWS RELEASE

OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY

WESTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI


JOHN F. WOOD



Contact Don Ledford, Public Affairs ● (816) 426-4220 ● 400 East Ninth Street, Room 5510 ● Kansas City, MO 64106

www.usdoj.gov/usao/mow/index.html



MAY 29, 2007

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


PROJECT SAFE CHILDHOOD

RETIRED SCHOOL TEACHER INDICTED

FOR PRODUCING CHILD PORN


            KANSAS CITY, Mo. – John F. Wood, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that an Independence, Mo., man, who was an elementary school teacher before retiring, was indicted by a federal grand jury today for using four minor boys to produce child pornography.


             John Edward Enness, 68, of Independence, was charged in a five-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Kansas City. Today’s indictment replaces a federal criminal complaint that was filed against Enness on May 11, 2007. Enness, a longtime teacher in the Kansas City, Mo., school district, remains in federal custody.


             Counts One through Four of the federal indictment allege four separate instances between March 1 and Sept. 1, 2005, in which Enness used minor boys to produce child pornography. The boys are identified in the indictment as John Doe #1, John Doe #2, John Doe #3 and John Doe #4.


             An affidavit filed in support of the original criminal complaint alleges that Enness used a covert motion detector camera hidden inside an alarm clock to videotape the boys while they were visiting his residence. Enness told police officers that one of the bedrooms at his residence was used by neighborhood boys when they spent the night with him. Enness downloaded the videos captured by the hidden camera to a computer, the affidavit says. Enness took that computer to Best Buy to be serviced on July 17, 2006. According to the affidavit, a Best Buy employee located evidence of child pornography when he started working on the computer, and his supervisor at Best Buy notified the Independence, Mo., Police Department.


             Count Five of the federal indictment alleges that Enness was in possession of child pornography on May 10, 2007.


             Today’s indictment also contains a forfeiture allegation, which would require Enness to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offenses, including his residence, a computer, a printer/scanner, and all hard drives and other electronic storage media containing child pornography.


            Wood cautioned that the charges contained in this indictment are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.


            This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Katharine Fincham. It was investigated by the Independence, Mo., Police Department and the FBI CyberCrimes Task Force.


Project Safe Childhood

            This case is being brought as part of Project Safe Childhood. In February 2006, Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales launched 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 www.projectsafechildhood.gov/.


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This news release, as well as additional information about the office of the United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, is available on-line at

www.usdoj.gov/usao/mow/index.html