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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Alabama

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Prattville Man, Shelby County Woman Indicted for Child Pornography, Enticement

BIRMINGHAM – A federal grand jury today indicted an Alabama couple on child pornography charges, announced U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town and ICE Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent in Charge Jere T. Miles.

 A two-count indictment filed in U.S. District Court charges KENNETH EARL HOOKS, 35, of Prattville, and SARAH PAULINE MORRIS, 28, of Shelby County, with producing child pornography and enticing a young child to engage in sexual activity for the purpose of creating obscene images between December 2016 and August 2017.

Police in California found Hooks and Morris living in a desert area on the southern tip of the state after locating a red Mitsubishi Montero with an Alabama license plate there, according to a May 4 federal criminal complaint and arrest affidavit issued for Hooks in the Northern District of Alabama. The red Mitsubishi was registered to Morris and police were searching for it because security cameras at a Walmart in Brawley, Calif., caught her driving it on March 30 when security officers at the store saw Morris attempting to film two young girls in a bathroom stall, according to the affidavit.

            “ICE-HSI and U.S. Marshals proved in this case that federal law enforcement is resolved to see child predators prosecuted, and that resolve doesn’t waiver when fugitives flee across state lines,” Town said. “Our net will always be bigger than their map.”

            Producing child pornography carries a penalty of 15 to 30 years in prison and a maximum $250,000 fine. Enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity in order to produce child pornography carries a sentence of 10 years to life in prison and a maximum $250,000 fine.

Immigrations and Customs Enforcement’s HSI investigated the case, which Assistant U.S. Attorney Xavier Carter is prosecuting.

An indictment contains only charges. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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Updated May 29, 2018