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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Illinois

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Registered Sex Offender Sentenced to 30 Years For Producing Child Pornography With A 4-Year Old

A registered sex offender who took sexually explicit photographs of a four-year old girl in East 
St. Louis will spend the next three decades behind bars. Andrew Wigfall, III, of East St. Louis has 
been sentenced to 30 years in federal prison and a lifetime term of supervised release for 
producing child pornography. The 47-year old defendant pleaded guilty to the charge earlier this 
year.

Wigfall’s crime first came to light on Jan. 26, 2019, when numerous local law enforcement agencies 
received calls that his Facebook Messenger account was distributing child pornography. Among the 
illicit photographs were images of Wigfall with a nude four-year old girl. The child’s grandmother 
saw the pictures and recognized they had been taken in her basement. She explained to police that 
Wigfall was a friend who often came over to her house to play dominoes with her husband when they 
were babysitting their grandchildren. She reported that neither she nor her husband had any idea 
the photographs had been taken, and they were unaware at the time that Wigfall was a registered sex 
offender.

When interviewed by police, Wigfall admitted taking explicit photographs of the girl with his cell 
phone just a few weeks earlier. He told investigators he had lost his phone on Jan. 25 and was not 
the person responsible for distributing the images over Facebook. Efforts by law enforcement to 
track and locate the phone were unsuccessful.

At the sentencing hearing, the victim’s grandmother expressed outrage on behalf of the family: “I 
never thought this would happen to us. I’m supposed to protect my children and grandchildren. But 
my trust was betrayed…. [Wigfall] wasn’t there to be my husband’s friend. He was there to seek out 
my granddaughter.” She added that her husband feels “like it’s all his fault” and that he 
constantly “apologizes to me that he let this man into our home.”

In handing down the sentence, Chief United States District Judge Nancy J. Rosenstengel explained 
that a 30-year term was necessary to protect the public, specifically citing Wigfall’s history of 
sexual offending. Wigf  ll has a prior conviction in St. Clair County Circuit Court   for
aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

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, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. 
For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on 
the tab “resources.”

The case was investigated by the United States Secret Service and the East St. Louis Police
Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Laura Reppert.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated August 28, 2019