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Press Release

Gulf Shores Man Sentenced to Five Years for Child Pornography Offense

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Alabama

United States Attorney Sean P. Costello of the Southern District of Alabama announced that Zachary Wood, 22, of Gulf Shores, Alabama, was sentenced today in federal court on a charge of receipt of child pornography.  Wood pled guilty to the charge in January of 2021. 

According to court documents filed in connection with his guilty plea, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency received a tip that eight files had been uploaded to Google Drive on February 1, 2018, some of which were reported to contain a visual depiction of children engaged in sex acts.  Google provided specific information related to the IP address and email address associated with the account and the uploads.  ALEA investigators issued a subpoena to CenturyLink to obtain the subscriber information associated with the IP address. On May 8, 2018, agents executed a search warrant at the address in Gulf Shores.  Wood is a resident at that address.  Wood was interviewed and admitted to transmitting the images.  Agents analyzed four devices and found over 10,000 images of child pornography and child erotica.

The analysts also located numerous images involving human mutilation, including images of dismembered females posed for pictures and images of necrophilia with mutilated corpses. There were multiple series of files that focus on the mutilation of a single victim. There were multiple instances of naked females that are impaled and roasting on a spit.  Wood also had authored a note on his phone where he expressed hatred and disdain for women, that he believes they should only be used as sexual objects for men, and that they should be killed once they reach age 60.

United States District Court Judge Jeffrey Beaverstock imposed a sentence of 60 months imprisonment.  The judge ordered that Wood be supervised by federal probation officers for the rest of his life, beginning upon his discharge from prison.  Upon his release from prison, Wood will be required to undergo sex offender treatment and to register as a sex offender.  Judge Beaverstock ordered that Mitchell pay $5100 in special assessments and $135,415 in restitution.  Wood will be prohibited from have any contact with minors.

This case was 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 and for information about internet safety education, visit

The case was investigated by the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency and Homeland Security Investigations.  It was prosecuted in the United States Attorney’s Office by Assistant United States Attorney Kacey Chappelear.

Updated April 27, 2021