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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


NOVEMBER 14, 2008

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


PROJECT SAFE CHILDHOOD


RETIRED SCHOOL TEACHER SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS

FOR PRODUCING CHILD PORNOGRAPHY


            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 sentenced in federal court today for secretly videotaping four minor boys in order to produce child pornography.


             John Edward Enness, 69, of Independence, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Nanette K. Laughrey this morning to 25 years in federal prison without parole. The court also ordered Enness to forfeit to the government his residence at 18100 E. 27th Terr., in Independence, a computer, a printer/scanner, and all hard drives and other electronic storage media containing child pornography, all of which were used to commit the offenses.


             Enness violated the trust of these children and their parents and exploited many more children whose sexual abuse is portrayed in the thousands of images of child pornography he collected,” said Wood. “This tough sentence will protect our community from a dangerous sexual predator and send a message that such criminal behavior will be severely punished.”


             Enness, a longtime teacher in the Kansas City, Mo., school district, pleaded guilty on May 21, 2008.


             Enness used a covert motion detector camera hidden inside an alarm clock in a bedroom of his house to secretly videotape four 12-to-14-year-old boys while they were visiting his residence during the spring and throughout the summer of 2005. The boys watched adult pornography on a computer that was located in the bedroom.


             Enness downloaded the videos captured by the hidden camera to a computer that he took to Best Buy to be serviced on July 17, 2006. He asked the service technician to back up the computer's hard drive because it was running slowly. 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.


             The Independence Police Department retrieved the computer and obtained a state warrant to search its contents. The computer was then taken to the Heart of America Regional Computer Forensic Laboratory to be forensically examined. The forensic examination revealed that the computer contained approximately 152 images depicting child pornography, and approximately 40 movie files depicting child pornography.


             Enness also admitted that he possessed two safety deposit boxes that contained more than 200 CDs with thousands of images and videos depicting child pornography.


            This case was 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, 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