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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, May 26, 2016

Patrick Air Force Base Staff Sergeant Sentenced To 10 Years For Attempted Enticement Of A Minor For Sex

Tampa, Florida – U.S. District Judge Charlene Edwards Honeywell has sentenced Air Force staff sergeant Thomas Allen Vaughn (34), who had previously been stationed at Patrick Air Force Base, to 10 years in federal prison for attempted enticement of a minor for sex. The Court also ordered Vaughn to forfeit a cell phone that he had used to commit the offense.

According to court documents, between October 23 and October 28, 2015, Vaughn communicated online with an undercover agent who was posing as the older brother of a 14-year-old girl, and indicated he was looking for a boyfriend for his sister. During online and phone conversations, Vaughn discussed his interest in engaging in sexual acts with the “girl.” Vaughn sent the “child” a photo of himself naked from the waist up and wrote directly to the “child” that a naked picture from her would be “hot.” He also requested that the “child” send him a “sexy” picture. Vaughn indicated that he wanted to meet the “child,” and asked her what street she lived on.

On October 28, 2015, Vaughn made plans to meet the “child” at 6:00 p.m. at her residence. The “child” advised that she was still at school and wouldn’t be at home at that time. Vaughn then drove to the school that he believed the “child” attended. He was arrested and had condoms in his possession.         

This case was investigated by Air Force Office of Special Investigations in Tampa. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Amanda C. Kaiser.

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 United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), 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.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated May 26, 2016