Have you ever sneaked a peek at what a person next to you is texting? In this true-crime, sneaking a peek led to an arrest and lengthy prison sentence.
Imagine for a moment, you’re on a commercial flight, and the person next to you is texting—allowed on many flights. When you take a side glance and peek at the texts, you see inappropriate content regarding the sexual exploitation of children.
It’s no secret that pedophiles gravitate toward employment where children are easily accessible—priesthood, school teacher, camp counselor, etc. In this true-crime, the scumbag accessed children through an equally disgusting person.
The witness who’d peeked at the man’s texts knew nothing about the man or the person on the other end of the text stream. It takes courage to get involved in a situation when you aren’t 100% certain you should. The passenger did, she got involved. She shared her concern with a flight attendant who notified law enforcement to meet the plane.
A U.S. Attorney involved in this case commented,
“We all have had that moment when we question: ‘Do I get involved?’ I commend the airline passenger who spoke up about the disturbing texts she witnessed on her flight.”
In the airport, officers from the local division of Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) pulled the passenger aside to question him and look at his electronic device. They found hundreds of images of child pornography.
While they questioned and subsequently arrested the 53-year-old airline passenger, the other person, his 50-year-old girlfriend, whom he had been texting with received a knock on her daycare door. Yes, she owned a daycare.
The daycare owner had been sharing sexually explicit images and videos of the children at her daycare with her boyfriend. In their texts, they discussed drugging and raping the daycare children.
The FBI arrested both of the sexual predators. After some time behind bars, both pleaded guilty. The court sentenced the flight passenger to 15 years in federal prison for Conspiracy to Produce Child Pornography, followed with a lifetime of supervised release. And the daycare owner to 6 years in federal prison for distribution of child pornography followed by 10 years of supervised release. The sentencing also required both criminals to register as sex offenders.
An FBI Special Agent in Charge, said,
“Protecting children is one of the FBI’s most noble missions.”
Source: U.S. Department of Justice