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Press Release

Syracuse Man Pleads Guilty to Receiving Child Pornography from Multiple Minors via SnapChat

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York

SYRACUSE, NEW YORK – William Futrell, age 31, of Syracuse, pled guilty yesterday to ten counts of receipt of child pornography. United States Attorney Carla B. Freedman and Matthew Scarpino, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Buffalo Field Office and New York State Police (NYSP) Superintendent Steven G. James made the announcement.

As part of his guilty plea, Futrell admitted that he used SnapChat to communicate with minors from across the country. In some instances, Futrell would offer to pay the minor children to entice them to send explicit images to him, but with no intention of ever paying them. On at least the 10 occasions charged, Futrell obtained, directly from minor children, images depicting the children engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Futrell is a registered sex offender with a previous conviction for possession of child pornography in New York.

The offenses to which Futrell pled guilty carry a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years, with a maximum of 40 years imprisonment. If Chief United States District Judge Brenda K. Sannes accepts the parties’ agreed-upon disposition at sentencing on September 20, 2024, Futrell will receive an imprisonment term of 262 months. Futrell’s sentence must also include a post-imprisonment term of supervised release of between five years and life, a fine of up to $250,000.00, restitution to the victims, and he will be required to register as a sex offender upon his release from prison. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the statute the defendant violated, the United States Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors.

United States Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) led the investigation with the assistance of the New York State Police (NYSP) Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and the New York State Police (NYSP) Troop D Computer Crime Unit. Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul Tuck prosecuted Futrell as part of Project Safe Childhood. 

Launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, Project Safe Childhood is led by United States Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS).  Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

Updated May 22, 2024

Project Safe Childhood