Assistant School Band Director Convicted of Distribution of Child Pornography
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - A 28-year-old Corpus Christi man has admitted he distributed child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.
In November 2017, an electronic chat room company notified the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) that a known image of child pornography had been uploaded to an internet chat room. Authorities were able to link the specific IP address associated with a user known as “jack” to Parker J. Pendergraph.
Law enforcement determined Pendergraph was employed as an assistant band director for a local high school and middle school and obtained a search warrant for his residence. At that time, authorities seized several digital devices that led to the discovery of the known image of child pornography uploaded to the chat room. In addition, law enforcement also located more than 500 images and 390 images of child erotica.
The image uploaded to the chat room was located on one of Pendergraph’s digital devices. The image depicted a minor female approximately 14 years of age that is nude and sitting on a chair with her knees bent exposing her vagina to the camera. Pendergraph was shown the image, after which he admitted to uploading it.
Pendergraph also acknowledged going to chat sites and wanting to trade pictures of nude girls. He further stated he had seen images of child pornography on his computer for almost a year.
Today, Pendergraph admitted he knew the image he distributed was child pornography.
Sentencing is set before U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzalez Ramos on July 19, 2018. At that time, Pendergraph faces a minimum of five and up to 20 years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 maximum fine. Upon completion of any prison term imposed, Pendergraph also faces a maximum of life on supervised release during which time the court can impose a number of special conditions designed to protect children and prohibit the use of the internet.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations and Corpus Christi Police Department’s – Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force conducted the investigation with the assistance of NCMEC.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Hugo R. Martinez is prosecuting the case, which 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."