Erie Resident Pleads Guilty to Violating Federal Laws Related to the Sexual Exploitation of Children
PITTSBURGH, PA - A resident of Glassport, PA, pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of possession of material depicting the sexual exploitation of a minor, Acting United States Attorney Stephen R. Kaufman announced today.
Rory Shelton, 58, pleaded guilty to one count before United States District Judge Robert J. Colville.
In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that in May 2019, a 16-year-old female went missing from her home in Paducah, Kentucky. An investigation traced the girl to Shelton’s one-room apartment in Glassport, PA, where the female was found to be staying with Shelton. Subsequent search warrants for the apartment and Shelton’s cell phones revealed an extensive collection of child pornography, including prepubescent minors and sadistic and masochistic conduct. Sexually exploitive images of the 16-year-old were also discovered.
Judge Colville scheduled sentencing for Dec. 1, 2021 at 9:00 a.m. The law provides for a total sentence of 20 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Pending sentencing, the court ordered Shelton to remain detained.
Assistant United States Attorney Lee J. Karl is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Borough of Glassport Police Department, and the Allegheny County Police Department conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Shelton.