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Press Release

Former Deputy Pleads Guily In Child Pornography Case

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of North Carolina

WILMINGTON – United States Attorney Thomas G. Walker announced that in federal court, JON JAMES THOMAS, 45, pled guilty before Senior United States District Judge James C. Fox to receipt of child pornography, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2252 (a) (2).

On October 15, 2015, a Federal Grand Jury returned a Criminal Indictment charging THOMAS.  At the time, THOMAS was a patrol deputy with the Onslow County Sheriff’s Department.

According to the investigation, law enforcement identified an IP address downloading and sharing child pornography via the peer-to-peer network, Shareaza.  As the investigation progressed, the address and user were identified as THOMAS.  THOMAS was interviewed and admitted over the past two years to downloading visual depictions of minor children engaging in sexually explicit conduct.  

Investigation of this case was conducted by the NC State Bureau of Investigation. Special Assistant United States Attorney Ethan Ontjes represented the government.  This case was accepted for federal prosecution as part of Project Safe Childhood.

Updated January 5, 2016