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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Arkansas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, June 18, 2020

Jury Finds Little Rock Man Guilty of Extortion and Production of Child Pornography

Defendant Used Online Alias to Threaten Women and Minors

     LITTLE ROCK—In the first federal criminal jury trial in the state since the coronavirus pandemic began in March, a federal jury found Devion Cumbie, 24, guilty on all seven counts for which he was indicted: production of child pornography, two counts of attempted production of child pornography, and four counts of extortion.

     The jury returned their verdict Thursday afternoon after deliberating for just under four hours. United States District Judge James M. Moody, Jr., presided over the three-day trial, and Judge Moody will sentence Cumbie, of Little Rock, at a later date. 

     “This defendant used the internet to manipulate his victims,” said Cody Hiland, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas. “Today’s verdict sends a clear message to those who engage in these disgusting acts under the cloak of perceived anonymity: you will be identified, and you will be prosecuted to the fullest extent available to us under federal law.”

     Testimony during the trial established that in late 2018, a 16-year-old girl in Colorado sent a Facebook message to “Chink Capone,” the online persona of an actor named Alex Drummond. However, the Facebook page actually belonged to Cumbie, posing as Drummond’s online persona. The two began talking, and Cumbie told the minor he might like to meet her soon but would first need to see some photographs of her in her underwear. Cumbie eventually convinced the minor to send him a partially nude photograph. Cumbie then threatened the minor that he would post the photo to her Facebook page unless she sent him a video of herself naked. The minor told her mother, and they reported the conduct to police. 

     Investigation revealed that Cumbie had conducted a similar scheme with numerous other victims, four of whom testified at trial, and some of whom were minors. Additionally, Cumbie was on pretrial release awaiting trial on federal gun charges while he engaged in the conduct that led to the child pornography and extortion charges. Cumbie was indicted by a federal grand jury in July 2019, and his first trial in February 2020 ended in a hung jury. A superseding indictment was filed earlier this month, resulting in this week’s trial and conviction. Cumbie is still awaiting trial on the separate firearms charges.

     “Today’s conviction closes the book on a criminal who took advantage of women and minors over the internet,” said FBI Little Rock Special Agent in Charge Diane Upchurch. “Mr. Cumbie disguised his true identity on the internet and then callously exploited numerous victims for his own sexual gratification. Our agents and law enforcement partners worked tirelessly on this investigation, and we feel like justice has been served with the jury’s verdict.”

     The statutory penalty for production of child pornography, as well as attempted production of child pornography, is not less than 15 years imprisonment, not more than 30 years imprisonment, and not less than five years of supervised release. The statutory penalty for extortion is not more than two years imprisonment and not more than one year of supervised release. All offenses of conviction include a potential penalty of not more than a $250,000 fine.

     The investigation was conducted by the FBI, and the case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Kristin Bryant and Erin O’Leary.

 

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This news release, as well as additional information about the office of the

United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, is available online at

https://www.justice.gov/edar

 

Twitter:

@EDARNEWS

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated June 18, 2020