Carl Deshawn Dean, 21, pleaded guilty to Distribution of Images Depicting the Sexual Exploitation of a Minor.
Dean will serve 7 years in prison, followed by 10 years of supervised release. The defendant was also ordered to pay $3,000 in restitution and $100 in special assessments to the Crime Victim’s Fund.
Between December 2016 and March 2, 2018, while serving as an Airman at the Minot Air Force Base, Dean solicited, received and distributed child pornography. Dean created a fake female persona and communicated with numerous individuals around the world in order to receive images of child pornography.
The Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI) investigation determined through its investigation that Dean sought out multiple individuals who had access to children and asked if these individuals would be willing to take nude photographs of or participate in sexual acts with these children.
AFOSI reviewed Dean’s electronic media and determined that he possessed 878 images and 42 videos of apparent child pornography; of which 693 unique images and 15 unique videos matched known child pornography images.
Dean used social networking and instant messaging applications, including Gmail, Facebook, Google Hangouts, Snapchat and Whatsapp to solicit child pornography.
Additionally, Dean shared images and videos of child pornography between 200 to 300 times. Finally, on approximately 15 occasions, Dean used messaging applications to create or record files from children he coerced to send him sexual images.
“The defendant deviously utilized electronic and social media platforms to illegally trade in vile images of sex crimes committed against children,” said U.S. Attorney Drew Wrigley.
“We commend the investigators in this case, as we work together to aggressively prioritize protecting children and someday eradicating the child pornography industry.”
On July 31, 2019, Dean pleaded guilty to distribution of child pornography. This case was investigated by the United States Air Force Office of Special Investigations and the Minot Police Department.
Assistant United States Attorney Jonathan J. O’Konek prosecuted the case.
U.S. Attorney Drew H. Wrigley announced that Chief Federal District Court Judge Daniel L. Hovland sentenced Dean today.