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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, February 1, 2019

Tulsa Man Admits to Creating Sexually Violent Images of Children Using Photographs Downloaded from Facebook

A 35-year-old Tulsa man entered a guilty plea today in U.S. District Court for digitally producing images depicting the sexual abuse of children and distributing almost 500 other graphic image and video files of the sexual abuse of children, announced U.S. Attorney Trent Shores.

At the plea hearing, Jerry Matthew Berry admitted to producing obscene visual representations of the sexual abuse of children and distributing child pornography in 2017 and 2018. Cyber Crimes detectives from the Tulsa Police Department and agents from Homeland Security Investigations discovered Berry’s illicit activities during a peer-to-peer file sharing undercover investigation. After executing a search warrant on Berry’s apartment, investigators also discovered hundreds of additional images and videos of child pornography on his phone. Berry, a former private school teacher in Oklahoma City, admitted to distributing child pornography on file sharing programs. He also admitted to downloading pictures of children from Facebook and digitally altering the photographs to depict himself sexually assaulting and physically harming the children.

“Tulsa Police Department Cyber Crimes detectives and Homeland Security special agents are resilient and committed to the fight to defend our children from online perpetrators. Their dedicated efforts enable the U.S. Attorney’s Office to bring child sex offenders to justice,” said U.S. Attorney Shores. “These days, parents must be ever vigilant because predators like Mr. Berry are lurking about on the internet. The facts of this case are a stark reminder that parents should check their privacy settings on social media and be aware when posting photos of their children.”

U.S. District Judge Claire V. Eagan accepted Berry’s guilty plea and set sentencing for May 7, at 10 a.m. At that time, Berry faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 years and up to 20 years in federal prison, at least five years and up to life of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine for each count. He remains in custody.

The Tulsa Police Department’s Cyber Crimes Unit and Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Nassar prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the United States Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s 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.  Internet safety education can be found on the tab labeled "resources” on the left column of the page.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Contact: 
Lennea Montandon 918-382-2755
Updated February 1, 2019