Lee's Summit Soccer Coach Sentenced to 30 Years for Secret Videos of 11 Child Victims
Project Safe Childhood
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a former Lee’s Summit, Mo., youth soccer coach was sentenced in federal court today to attempting to produce child pornography by secretly videotaping members of his soccer team.
Joel D. White, 41, of Lee’s Summit, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Dean Whipple to 30 years in federal prison without parole. White pleaded guilty on July 30, 2014, to three counts of attempting to produce child pornography.
White coached a girls under-12 soccer team and a girls under-15 soccer team through the Lee’s Summit Soccer Association. The Lee’s Summit Soccer Association has cooperated fully with law enforcement officers during this investigation. White also owned his own business, Adida Entertainment, which provided DJ and photography services for weddings, parties, dances, and reunions at both public and private events.
White admitted that he videotaped 11 child victims without their consent while they were changing clothes in his daughter’s bedroom at his residence. White videotaped the child victims 10 to 15 times without their consent from approximately May 2012 until October 2012, when the victims were between 11 and 12 years of age. White also admitted that he touched one of the child victims on the breast with his hand and mouth while she was sleeping next to his own minor relative at his residence, and that he recorded this touching.
White is clearly identified in the videos setting up the camera and recovering the camera after the child victims leave the room. In one video, as White recovers the camera, he looks into the camera and gives himself two “thumbs up.”
Under Department of Justice guidelines, the attempted production of child pornography is ordinarily charged in cases that involve surreptitious recordings. The statutory penalties for producing child pornography are the same as the penalties for attempting to produce child pornography.
The investigation began when White was arrested for stealing in Commerce City, Colo. In March 2013 the soccer stadium in Commerce City was hosting a world cup qualifying game. Colorado authorities contacted White at the stadium when he was accused of stealing soccer-related items and merchandise from the stadium. Officers searched White as well as his backpack, camera, vehicle and hotel room. Officers located stolen items in White’s possession and in his hotel room and White was arrested for felony stealing. White’s cameras, computer and computer media were recovered during the course of the stealing investigation.
Detectives wanted to investigate the possibility that White was placing advertisements on sites such as “Craigslist” to sell the stolen items. They began reviewing the cameras and computer media and observed a video of a minor female changing clothes in what appeared to be White’s residence. Commerce City police officials then contacted the Lee’s Summit, Mo., Police Department to take the lead on the child pornography investigation.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Teresa A. Moore. It was investigated by the Lee’s Summit, Mo., Police Department and the Commerce City, Colo., Police Department.
Project Safe Childhood
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."