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Press Release

New York City Police Officer Charged with Sex Offenses Relating to Minors

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of New York

A four-count indictment was unsealed today in federal court in Brooklyn charging Christopher Terranova, a New York City police officer, with attempting to exploit children and coercion and enticement of a minor.  In at least one instance, Terranova is alleged to have used his position as a police officer to gain access to a victim who had previously been the victim of a crime.  Terranova was arrested this morning and will be arraigned later today before United States Magistrate Judge Marcia M. Henry.

Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and James Smith, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), announced the arrest and charges.

 “The defendant allegedly preyed upon vulnerable youth in the same community he was sworn to protect,” stated United States Attorney Peace.   “Protecting minors from those who violate their position of trust will always be a priority of this Office.  I urge parents and caregivers to have conversations with their children about the dangers of communicating online with strangers and individuals who seek to exploit them.” 

Mr. Peace expressed his appreciation to the New York City Police Department's Internal Affairs Bureau and the Richmond County District Attorney’s Office for its significant cooperation and assistance during the investigation. 

“The FBI takes crimes against children seriously—even more so when it involves someone who took an oath to serve and protect, and whom the public holds to a higher standard,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Smith.  “The damage done by Terranova’s alleged depravity will likely outlast any punishment he ultimately receives. The FBI is dedicated to doing the work to restore public faith in law enforcement when individuals attempt to use the badge to hide their illegal behavior. We thank the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York and our law enforcement partners for their efforts in this case.”

As set forth in the indictment and other court documents, Terranova is charged with using social media to engage in sexually explicit conversations with underage boys and attempting to entice those victims into taking sexually explicit photographs of themselves and sharing them with the defendant.  Terranova used popular social media applications, such as Snapchat, to message with underage boys whom he encountered socially or through his job as a police officer.  After establishing a relationship with the boys, Terranova solicited them for nude photographs.  On at least one occasion, in the guise of giving a boy a ride home from a party, Terranova brought the boy to a secluded location where he directed the victim to engage in sex acts with him.

Between March 2023 and May 2023, the defendant targeted a 15-year-old boy (John Doe 3) who was the victim of a robbery.  After viewing John Doe 3’s personal information in an NYPD database, Terranova messaged the victim’s personal phone under the pretense of checking on him after the robbery.  The defendant wrote, “it’s Chris Terranova the cop you met at the 121 [Precinct] that day with mom, i just wanted to reach out to see if you were doing ok after the incident, I hate seeing these things happen to good Guys like yourself.”  Terranova then connected with John Doe 3 via social media and attempted to engage him in conversation about sexual activity and pornography.  After sending John Doe 3 a sexually explicit photograph of himself, Terranova messaged the victim: “See it’s nothing[.] Your turn[.]”      

Anyone with relevant information is asked to contact the FBI at or 212-384-1000.

The charges in the indictment are allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.  If convicted, Terranova faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years’ imprisonment and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Civil Rights Section.  Assistant United States Attorneys Lauren Howard Elbert and Rachel Shanies are in charge of the prosecution. 

The Defendants:

Christopher Terranova
Age: 33
Staten Island, New York

E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 21-CR-516 (KAM)


John Marzulli
Danielle Blustein Hass
U.S. Attorney's Office
(718) 254-6323

Updated December 14, 2023

Project Safe Childhood
Civil Rights
Human Trafficking