FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
MONDAY - September 15, 2008
COAST GUARD SEAMAN PLEADS TO CHILD PORNOGRAPHY CHARGE
RALEIGH - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding announced that in federal court here today KEITH DAVID SMITH, 22, Oak Island, North Carolina, pled guilty before United States District Judge James C. Dever, III.
A one-count Criminal Information was filed on August 4, 2008 charging receipt of child pornography, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2252(a)(2), which carries a maximum penalty of up to 20 years imprisonment followed by up to a lifetime of supervised release and up to a $250,000 fine. On January 12, 2008, an investigation was opened in response to allegations that SMITH possessed images and videos of child pornography on his personal computer. After an interview with SMITH, both his laptop and desk computer were taken for forensic analysis. The analysis showed 45 digital images and 33 videos of child pornography on the desktop and 37 digital images on the laptop.
“In previous times, we could lock our doors to keep our children safe. Today it is more difficult as the Internet allows predators to come into our homes, at times without a parent’s knowledge. To protect our children, parents must maintain a control, not only on what is being viewed, but by what is being placed on the Internet,” warned Mr. Holding.
This case is part of the Project Safe Childhood initiative, a national program aimed at ensuring that criminals exploiting children are effectively prosecuted by making full use of all available law enforcement resources at every level. For more information about this important national project, Project Safe Childhood, go to www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
Investigation of the case was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Coast Guard Investigative Service. Assistant United States Attorney Ethan Ontjes served as prosecutor for the government.
News releases are available on the U. S. Attorney’s web page at www.usdoj.gov/usao/nce within 48 hours of release.