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Justice News

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

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Sexual Predator Receives Lengthy Prison Sentence For Extorting Girls To Send Him Pornographic Images

ATLANTA - Destin Whitmore has been sentenced to 17 years, six months for extortion, distribution of child pornography, and possession of child pornography.  The defendant used a social media site, where he maintained two fake aliases as well as a personal account, to entice and then force nine minors to provide him pornographic images of them. 

“This case is a sad example of the dangers of the Internet for teens that aren’t careful,” said Acting U.S. Attorney John Horn. “This defendant victimized at least nine teenage girls by using their images to extort pornographic images, creating a vicious cycle of exploiting vulnerable victims.”

According to Acting U.S. Attorney Horn, the charges and other information presented in court: In April 2012, a girl in Arizona reported that she had been contacted on Facebook by an individual using the profile name “Ralph Jenkins.” The individual using the Jenkins profile, later identified as Destin Whitmore, sent the teen compromising images of herself that she had previously sent to Whitmore, and he threatened to send those images to other persons, including her family members, if she did not immediately create additional images for him.

A subsequent investigation of that profile, along with a profile using the name “Lenny Carlington,” showed that both profiles were used by Whitmore, along with his own Facebook account, to transmit pornographic images of numerous teen girls to the girls in order to extort them for additional images.  He threatened to distribute the pornographic images to others and post them on various websites for public consumption if they did not comply with his demands.  Whitmore knew many of the girls through personal relationships or through long-term communications using web cameras with the girls online.  Some of the girls had previously sent sexually explicit images to Whitmore or had provided such images to others, which Whitmore subsequently obtained.  The investigation revealed that Whitmore contacted and extorted at least nine minors over a period of six months.

Whitmore, 23, of Canton, Georgia, has been sentenced to 17 years, six months in prison to be followed by supervised release for life.  Whitmore was convicted of these charges on September 22, 2014, when he pleaded guilty.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Cobb County Police Department.

Assistant United States Attorneys Mary Webb and Paul R. Jones prosecuted the case.

This case is being brought as part of Project Safe Childhood. In February 2006, the Attorney General launched Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse.  Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices around the country, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the home page for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia Atlanta Division is http://www.justice.gov/usao/gan/.

Updated April 8, 2015