DOJ SealDepartment of Justice

United States Attorney Rebecca A. Gregory
Eastern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                               CONTACT:  DAVILYN WALSTON
FRIDAY, JULY 25, 2008                                                       PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER
WWW.USDOJ.GOV/USAO/txe                         PHONE: (409) 839-2538 CELL: (409) 553-9881
                                                                                                            

                                                                                                    

KANSAS WOMAN GUILTY OF SEXUALLY EXPLOITING
HER OWN GRANDCHILDREN 

            MARSHALL TX – United States Attorney Rebecca A. Gregory announced today that a 51-year-old Overland Park, Kansas woman has pleaded guilty to child pornography violations in the Eastern District of Texas.

DENISE WARD pleaded guilty to the felony offense of Coerced Sexual Activity late yesterday before United States Magistrate Judge Chad Everingham.   

According to information presented in court, in May of 2000, while Ward was living in Harrison County, Texas, she was visited by her two grandchildren, ages 10 and 11, from another state.  During the visit, and without the knowledge of their parents, Ward helped to produce a video tape of the children in which they appeared nude and in a manner that constituted a lascivious exhibition of their genitalia.  Ward was indicted by a federal grand jury on March 4, 2008. 

Ward faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000.00.  A sentencing date has not been set.

This case is part of Project Safe Childhood (PSC).  In February 2006, the Department of Justice created Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse.  Lead 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 information about Project Safe Childhood, visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov/.

This is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Longview Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jim Noble.
           
           

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