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Press Release

Parkersburg man sentenced to federal prison for possessing child pornography

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

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A Parkersburg man was sentenced today to two years in federal prison for possessing over 600 images of child pornography, announced United States Attorney Carol Casto. John Leslie Hess, 64, previously pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography. After completing his prison term, he will be on federal supervised release for 10 years, the first of which will be served on home confinement. Hess will also be required to register as a sex offender.

Hess admitted that on March 2, 2015, he possessed images of prepubescent minors engaged in sexual acts. The images were contained on his personal computers and multiple media devices found at his residence in Parkersburg. The investigation revealed that Hess was using a peer-to-peer file sharing program to download, receive, and distribute child pornography. 

The FBI, the West Virginia State Police, the West Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and the Parkersburg Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Lisa G. Johnston is in charge of the prosecution. United States District Judge John T. Copenhaver, Jr., imposed the sentence.

This case is being brought as part of an ongoing initiative of the United States Attorney’s Office to combat child sexual exploitation and abuse in the Southern District of West Virginia.

Updated November 16, 2016

Project Safe Childhood