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Press Release

Livingston County Man Sentenced to 210 Months in Prison for Possession of Child Pornography

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of Illinois

PEORIA, Ill. – A Campus, Illinois, man, Dakota Flint, 23, of the 200 block of Sheldon Avenue, was sentenced today to 17.5 years, to be followed by 20 years of supervised release, for possession of child pornography. U.S. District Judge James Shadid ordered that the federal sentence run concurrently with Livingston County, Illinois, Circuit Court cases 20-CF-162 and 21-CF-6 where Flint was convicted of aggravated criminal sexual assault and predatory criminal sexual assault, respectively. Flint also must register as a sex offender.

At the sentencing hearing, the government presented evidence that Flint was operating on the dark web under the username “acidman”. Flint used websites he accessed to distribute child pornography and to discuss engaging in hands-on sex offenses. Flint also inquired about how to sedate children and bragged about assaults he committed or planned to commit. After Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) located Flint, his electronic devices were confiscated, and a forensic analysis was conducted, revealing he was responsible for more than 4,000 images of child pornography. The analysis further revealed images and videos taken by Flint of minor juvenile females. The ensuing investigation resulted in Flint’s conviction in three sexual assault cases in Livingston County. At least one image and one video produced and distributed by Flint on the “dark web” has been in the possession of persons under investigation or charged in other districts.

Also at the hearing, Judge James Shadid found that Flint’s possession and distribution of images of child sex abuse had contributed to psychological harm and trauma experienced by child victims whose images are trafficked online.  Judge Shadid stated that Flint’s use of the dark net in an attempt to conceal his activities and identity online was a factor that he considered in imposing the sentence.

Flint was originally indicted in June 2020 and pleaded guilty to the charge in January 2022. He has remained in the custody of the U.S. Marshals since indictment.

The statutory penalties for possession of child pornography are up to 20 years imprisonment and up to a lifetime of supervised release.

HSI investigated the case, along with the Livingston County, Illinois, Sheriff’s Office; Will County, Illinois, Sherriff’s Office; Coal City, Illinois, Police Department; and Dwight, Illinois, Police Department. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the HSI Cyber Crimes Center assisted the investigation as well. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Ronald L. Hanna and Paul B. Morris represented the government in the prosecution.

The case against Flint was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative by the Department of Justice to combat the epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. 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

Updated July 1, 2022

Project Safe Childhood