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columbia man pleads guilty to possessing child porn

January 18, 2012

            JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Beth Phillips, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Columbia, Mo., man pleaded guilty in federal court today to possessing child pornography.

            Norman Leroy Troxel, 45, of Columbia, pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge Matt J. Whitworth to the charge contained in a Sept. 23, 2010, federal indictment.

            Troxel admitted that he was in possession of child pornography from Dec. 19, 2009, to June 17, 2010.

            According to today’s plea agreement, a man who was performing repairs on Troxel’s computer discovered 50-100 videos of suspected child pornography while he was working on the laptop. When law enforcement officers examined the computer, they identified 31 of 79 videos of children as child pornography and many of the 192 photographs of children as child erotica. When officers searched Troxel’s residence, they found a Sony camcorder and an 8mm tape that had been created by recording from his television as it displayed images and videos of children being sexually molested. The videotape contained an hour and 30 minutes of images and videos of children as young as three years of age being sexually molested.

            By pleading guilty today, Troxel also agreed to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the offense, including a laptop computer, a Sony 8mm camcorder, a computer hard drive and various 8mm videotapes, VHS videotapes and CDs.

Under federal statutes, Troxel is subject to a sentence of up to 10 years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

            This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lawrence E. Miller. It was investigated by the Boone County Sheriff’s Department Cyber Crimes Task Force, the Columbia, Mo, Police Department, the University of Missouri Police Department and the FBI.

Project Safe Childhood
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

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