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Press Release

Quincy, Illinois Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Possession of Child Pornography

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

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – A Quincy, Illinois, man, Earl Wierschem, 53, of the 600 Block of South 21st Street, was sentenced on February 25, 2022 to 120 months in the Federal Bureau of Prisons, to be followed by a five-year term of supervised release, for possession of child pornography.

At the sentencing hearing, the government presented evidence that in February 2018, law enforcement officials executed a search warrant at Wierschem’s residence in Quincy. During the search, officers seized multiple computer and video related devices, including Wierschem’s cell phone. The phone contained 30 images and one video of child pornography.

Also at the hearing, U.S. District Judge Sue E. Myerscough found that Wierschem had a prior Illinois state conviction for indecent solicitation of a child with the intent to commit aggravated sexual abuse.

Wierschem was indicted in February 2019 and pleaded guilty in April 2021.

The statutory penalties for possession of child pornography are a minimum of 10 years and up to 20 years of imprisonment, a minimum five-year term and up to a life term of supervised release, and not more than a $250,000 fine.

The Quincy Police Department investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tim Bass represented the government in the prosecution.

The case 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 February 28, 2022

Project Safe Childhood