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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, February 4, 2019

Randallstown Man Sentenced to 35 Years in Federal Prison for Sexual Exploitation of a Child

Admitted Sexually Abusing Two Other Minor Children

Baltimore, Maryland – On February 1, 2019, U.S. District Judge George L. Russell, III sentenced Kenneth M. Smith, age 40, of Randallstown, Maryland, to 35 years in federal prison, followed by a lifetime of supervised release, for two counts of sexual exploitation of a child in which Smith sexually abused a young boy and took photographs on his phone documenting the abuse.  Judge Russell ordered that, upon his release from prison, Smith must register as a sex offender in the places where he resides, where he is an employee, and where he is a student, under the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA).

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur; Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; Acting Special Agent in Charge Cardell Morant of ICE Homeland Security Investigations; Chief Terrence B. Sheridan of the Baltimore County Police Department; Colonel William M. Pallozzi, Superintendent of the Maryland State Police; and State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger of the Baltimore County State’s Attorney’s Office.

According to his plea agreement and other court documents, on September 8, 2015, an electronic communications service reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (“NCMEC”) that one of its users had uploaded an image of known child pornography and that user’s account was related to others associated with Smith.  It was determined that Smith’s account was active on an image-sharing website that contains child pornography and erotica.  The IP address used to access the account was assigned to Smith’s mother’s residence in Randallstown, Maryland, where he was living at the time.

On October 12, 2015, the Baltimore County Police Department executed a search warrant at the residence and discovered Smith’s laptop, which was powered on and had an anonymous file-sharing platform open on the screen. The file-sharing program was active and downloading child pornography files.  A downloads folder was also open and contained numerous files of child pornography.

During an interview with investigators, Smith admitted to sexually abusing a young boy when he was between five and eight years old, and taking pictures of the abuse with his smartphone. Investigators located the photographs of Smith engaged in sexually explicit conduct with the boy.  Smith further admitted to engaging in sexual activity with two other minors, including a young girl in Washington County, Maryland.  In September 2017, Smith was convicted after a trial in Washington County Circuit Court for a third-degree sex offense, and for unnatural or perverted practice.  The minor victim was required to testify at the trial.  In November 2017, Smith was sentenced to 16 years in state prison on those charges.  Smith’s federal sentence will be served concurrent to his state sentence.

Investigators recovered thousands of other videos and images of children being sexually abused, including images and videos of the rape of children, including infants and toddlers.  Smith also used his e-mail accounts to send and receive child pornography.

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 Attorney’s 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 Robert K. Hur commended the FBI, HSI, the Baltimore County Police Department, the Maryland State Police, the Baltimore County State’s Attorney’s Office, the Washington County State’s Attorney’s Office, and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office for their work in the investigation.  Mr. Hur thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zachary A. Myers and Jeffrey J. Izant, who prosecuted the case.

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Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Contact: 
Marcia Murphy (410) 209-4854
Updated February 4, 2019