Clearfield County Man Charged with Possessing Child Pornography
JOHNSTOWN, Pa. – A resident of Houtzdale, Pa. was indicted today by a federal grand jury in Johnstown on a charge of possession of child pornography, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.
The indictment named Ellis D. Passmore, Jr., 44, of Houtzdale, Pa., as the sole defendant.
According to the indictment presented to the court, on Aug. 29, 2015, he received material depicting the sexual exploitation of a minor and on Oct. 5, 2015, he knowingly possessed pictures and videos in individual computer graphic files which were produced using prepubescent minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct. The computer graphic files were shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce.
The law provides for a maximum total sentence of 40 years in prison, a fine of $500,000 or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Assistant United States Attorney John J. Valkovci, Jr., is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
The Laurel Highlands Resident Agency of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Pennsylvania State Police, Clearfield Barracks, conducted the investigation leading to the indictment in this case.
An indictment is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
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 better 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.justice.gov/psc.