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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Evansville Man Sentenced to Over 17 Years in Federal Prison for Drugging and Sexually Exploiting a Child

EVANSVILLE – An Evansville man was sentenced to over 17 years in federal prison for sexually exploiting a child in his care and creating images of the abuse.

According to court documents, on March 25, 2021 the Evansville Police Department responded to an address in Evansville. The officer spoke with an adult female who was reporting that Todd Johnson Jr., 33, Evansville, had sexually explicit images of a child on his cell phone. She reported that earlier that day, she saw an image on Johnson’s cell phone when he was asleep. Johnson awoke and after a confrontation, he fled the area, but the adult female was able to retain his cell phone.

After further investigation, it was discovered that Johnson Jr. used a prescription drug to sedate the minor victim, then he would sexually abuse the victim and take pictures of the abuse. The abuse images demonstrated that the child was heavily sedated or unconscious at the times of the abuse.  An arrest warrant was issued for Johnson on April 7, 2021, and he was arrested on April 8, 2021.

Zachary A. Myers, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana, and FBI Indianapolis Acting Special Agent in Charge Gregory Nelsen made the announcement.

The Federal Bureau of Investigations investigated the case. The Evansville Police Department and the Vanderburgh County Prosecutor’s Office Cyber Crime Unit also provided valuable assistance. The sentence was imposed by U.S. District Judge Richard Young. As part of the sentence, Judge Young also imposed 15 years of supervised release and Johnson must register as a sex offender.

U.S. Attorney Myers thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Todd S. Shellenbarger who prosecuted this case.

In fiscal year 2019, the Southern District of Indiana was second out of the 94 federal districts in the country for the number of child sexual exploitation cases prosecuted.

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 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, 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 www.justice.gov/psc

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated January 19, 2022