Sunbury Man Pleads Guilty to Distribution of Child Pornography
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Mark W. Wolfe, 50, of Sunbury, Ohio, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to distribution of child pornography.
Carter M. Stewart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Angela L. Byers, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Westerville Police Chief Joseph Morbitzer announced the plea entered into today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Terence P. Kemp.
According to court documents, undercover investigators observed files containing child pornography being shared through an IP address belonging to Wolfe. During a search warrant executed on July 31 at Wolfe’s residence, investigators discovered a laptop containing approximately 486 videos and 203 images of child pornography. The files were located in several folders on the computer under the user name “Mark.” Some of the videos showed children as young as eight-to-10 months old being sexually abused.
Further forensic analysis of the computer revealed Skype chat messages between Wolfe and several other individuals. In these conversations, Wolfe allegedly distributed child pornography files and claimed to have previously engaged in sex acts with minors and stated that his favorite age is five to ten years old.
Wolfe was charged by indictment in September 2015. He pleaded guilty to one count of distribution of child pornography, which is punishable by at least five years and up to 20 years in prison.
This case is being brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the U.S. Attorneys Offices, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov/.
Stewart commended the investigation by the FBI Columbus Child Exploitation Task Force, which includes officers from the Westerville Police Department, Reynoldsburg Police Department, Powell Police Department and Belmont County Sheriff’s Office, as well as Assistant U.S. Attorney Heather A. Hill, who is prosecuting the case.