You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Pennsylvania

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Washington County Man Sentenced to 12 Years in Prison for Child Pornography Crimes

PITTSBURGH – After conviction at trial, a former resident of Allegheny County has been sentenced to 151 months imprisonment, followed by 10 years supervised release, on his convictions of Distribution and Possession of Material Depicting the Sexual Exploitation of a Minor, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.

United States District Judge Donetta W. Ambrose imposed the sentence on Christopher Welshans, 39, of Atlasburg, Pennsylvania.

According to information presented to the Court at trial, on or about Feb. 11, 2014, Welshans distributed videos and images containing material depicting the sexual exploitation of minors. In addition, on or about March 21, 2014, Welshans knowingly possessed videos and images in computer graphic files, the production of which involved the use of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct, some of whom had not yet attained 12 years of age.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jessica Lieber Smolar and Shanicka L. Kennedy prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

U.S. Attorney Hickton commended the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General and Federal Bureau of Investigation for conducting the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Welshans.

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

Project Safe Childhood
Updated October 26, 2016