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Press Release

Des Moines Man Sentenced to 55 Years in Federal Prison for Child Pornography and Gun Crimes

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

DES MOINES, IA – Gary Dale Elliott, Sr., age 62, of Des Moines, was sentenced May 27, 2022, to 660 months in prison. That sentence followed Elliott’s guilty pleas to production of child pornography, receipt of child pornography, and felon in possession of a firearm.

The investigation of Elliott began in early 2021, when a woman reported to law enforcement that she had found thumb drives containing child pornography in Elliott’s Des Moines residence. Elliott, a felon, later threatened the woman while armed with a loaded gun.

In February 2021, officers executed a search warrant at Elliott’s residence and seized computers, thumb drives, and other electronic devices. Officers searched those devices and located thousands of images and videos of child pornography. The investigation also revealed that Elliott produced child pornography in 2018 by filming three minor victims with a camera hidden in the bathroom of his residence.

Elliott’s criminal history includes a 1988 conviction resulting from the death of Elliott’s infant son. Elliott spent approximately 27 years in prison for that offense before being paroled in 2015.

United States Attorney Richard D. Westphal of the Southern District of Iowa made the announcement. This matter was investigated by the Des Moines Police Department, Iowa Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and the FBI Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Force. The case was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa.


Rachel J. Scherle

Updated May 31, 2022

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Childhood