Navy Petty Officer Indicted for Receipt of Child Pornography
DON EDWARD PANNELL, II (“PANNELL”), age 32, of Harvey, Louisiana, was indicted today for receipt of child pornography, announced United States Attorney Duane A. Evans.
The case against Petty Officer 2nd Class DON EDWARD PANNELL, II developed as a result of an undercover child exploitation investigation conducted by special agents with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations (“HSI”). PANNELL is a Petty Officer 2nd Class in the U.S. Navy assigned to Fleet Readiness Center Mid-Atlantic Detachment, New Orleans. On April 2, 2018, HSI special agents along with special agents with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Louisiana Bureau of Investigation seized electronic evidence from PANNELL’s Harvey apartment and took PANNELL into custody. According to the federal indictment, PANNELL knowingly received and attempted to receive visual depictions of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct in violation of federal law.
U.S. Attorney Evans reiterated that the Indictment is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
If convicted, PANNELL faces a mandatory minimum penalty of five (5) years imprisonment up to twenty (20) years, followed by up to a life term of supervised release, and a $250,000.00 fine.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”
U.S. Attorney Evans praised the work of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, and the Louisiana Bureau of Investigation in investigating this matter. The prosecution of this case is being handled by Project Safe Childhood Coordinator and Fraud Section Chief, Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian M. Klebba.