St. Augustine Sex Offender Charged With Child Exploitation Offenses
Jacksonville, Florida – United States Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez announces the return of an indictment charging Kenneth Brian Hanger (46, St. Augustine) with attempted online enticement of a minor, attempted production of child pornography, and online solicitation of child pornography. In 1994, Hanger was convicted of aggravated indecent assault in Bradford County, Pennsylvania and is required to register as a sexual offender. Because of his prior child sex offense conviction, Hanger faces cumulative enhanced penalties in this case of 70 years, and up to life, in federal prison. On July 6, 2018, Hanger was ordered detained pending his trial.
According to court documents, on May 22, 2018, a detective with the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office (SJSO) reviewed sexual offender registration information provided by Hanger. Hanger disclosed his use of a Facebookaccount that did not list his true name. Posing as a minor child, the detective sent a “friend request” to this account, and Hanger accepted this request and made online contact with the “child.” Between May 24 and June 5, 2018, Hanger and the “child” engaged in online conversations on several occasions using a texting application. Hanger was advised and acknowledged that the “child” was 13 years old.
On June 1, 2018, Hanger raised the topic of sexual activity between himself and the “child” and suggested meeting to engage in sex. On June 4, 2018, Hanger and the “child” again discussed meeting for sex, and Hanger sent the “child” an explicit photo of himself. Hanger suggested that they would need to use condoms so that the “child” would not become pregnant and Hanger would not “leave any DNA.” Later that day, Hanger asked the “child” to send him a graphic video depicting “her” genitalia. The next day, SJSO detectives arrested Hanger at his home.
This case was investigated by the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney D. Rodney Brown.
It is another case 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.