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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Maryland

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 8, 2016

Essex Man Convicted by Federal Jury for Receiving and Possessing Child Pornography

Baltimore, Maryland – A federal jury convicted Carl Javan Ross, age 30, of Essex, Maryland, for receipt and possession of child pornography. The verdict was returned on December 7, 2016, after 30 minutes of deliberation.

The conviction was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Andre R. Watson of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; Chief James W. Johnson of the Baltimore County Police Department; and Baltimore County State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger.

According to the evidence presented at his three-day trial, on July 2, 2015, an undercover Baltimore County detective was conducting an online investigation looking for offenders sharing child pornography on certain file sharing networks.  The detective downloaded two video files documenting the sexual abuse of prepubescent children from an IP address later identified as being used by Ross.

Trial testimony showed that a search warrant was executed at Ross’ residence on July 28, 2015, and law enforcement recovered his laptop computer.  A preview of the computer showed that it contained a user hash, which is a unique value assigned by the file sharing program, that was identical to that of the computer that shared the two videos of child pornography downloaded by the detective.  In addition, investigators found search terms indicative of child pornography and digital images of child pornography.

As a result of his conviction, Ross will be required to register as a sex offender in the place where he resides, where he is an employee, and where he is a student, under the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA).

Ross faces a mandatory minimum of five years and a maximum of 20 years in prison for each of the two counts of receipt of child pornography, and a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for possession of child pornography, followed by up to a lifetime of supervised release.  U.S. District Judge J. Frederick Motz has not set a date for sentencing.  Ross was previously convicted in Baltimore County Circuit Court on related sex offense charges. He is scheduled to be sentenced in that case on January 4, 2017. Ross remains detained pending sentencing.

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.justice.gov/psc.  For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.justice.gov/psc and click on the "resources" tab on the left of the page.                    

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended HSI Baltimore, the FBI, Baltimore County Police Department, and Baltimore County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation.  Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Paul E. Budlow and Paul Riley, who are prosecuting the federal case.

Topic: 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated December 8, 2016