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Press Release

Pennsylvania Man Sentenced for Online Enticement of a Minor

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

RALEIGH, N.C. – A Pennsylvania man was sentenced today to 120 months imprisonment followed by 60 months of supervised release for online enticement of a minor after text messages between the defendant, James Julius Caton, age 29, and the minor victim that were sexual in nature were uncovered on the victim’s phone. The messages include discussion of Caton traveling from Pennsylvania to North Carolina to have sex with the victim. Caton pled guilty to the charge on February 22, 2024.

According to court documents and other information presented in court, Caton was investigated by the Cary Police Department after a mom found sexual text messages between Caton and her 13-year-old child. Law enforcement analyzed the child’s phone and interviewed the child. It was learned Caton first reached out to the child on Omegle, a free, web-based online chat service that allowed users to socialize without the need to register. The conversation moved to Snapchat and Instagram, and later to text messages. Search warrants were obtained for both Caton’s and the victim’s Snapchat and Instagram accounts, where sexually explicit conversations between the two were discovered.   In text messages between the two, Caton encouraged the child to send pictures of their genitals to Caton.  In addition, Caton and the child discussed meeting to engage in sexual activities. 

Caton was arrested in Pennsylvania where he was living.  His digital devices were analyzed in Pennsylvania and law enforcement found unrelated images and videos of child pornography on his cellular device.

Michael Easley, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina made the announcement after the sentencing was concluded.  U.S. District Judge Terrence W. Boyle presided over the sentencing.  The Cary Police Department and the Department of Homeland Security investigated the case and Assistant U.S. Attorney Charity Wilson prosecuted the case.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys' Offices and 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

Related court documents and information can be found on the website of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina or on PACER by searching for Case No. 5:23-CR-341-BO.


Updated June 5, 2024

Project Safe Childhood