• WRIL-FM

Virginia man sentenced in interstate child porn case involving Claiborne County minor

From The Claiborne Progress -

A Virginia man has been sentenced in U.S. District Court for attempting to coerce a Claiborne County minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct so that he may produce child pornography.


Gregory Lynn McKnight Jr., 28, of Clintwood, Virginia will serve 180 months in federal prison prior to 15 years supervision by the U.S. Probation Office. McKnight is also ordered to register as a sex offender in any state in which he lives, works or attends school.


Local law enforcement authorities were approached by the parents of the minor female with allegations that McKnight had contacted their daughter on social media, sending messages of a sexual nature.


The undercover investigation revealed that McKnight did attempt to get the minor to send him sexually explicit depictions of her, asking the girl to meet with him for the purpose of sex. He drove from Virginia to Tennessee for that purpose.


“This prosecution represents part of our efforts to work with law enforcement agencies to protect children from persons who try to groom children online for child pornography and other illicit purposes,” said J. Douglas Overbey, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee.


Overbey encourages parents to be vigilant concerning the online activities of their children.


“These predators operate from the shadows of the internet, pretend to befriend young people, and then prey upon the minors’ vulnerability to induce them to send sexual images and videos, unbeknownst to their parents.”


The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with assistance from the Claiborne County Sheriff’s Office.


Assistant U.S. Attorneys Matthew T. Morris and Jennifer Kolman represented the United States in Court.


This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood (PSC), a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.


Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, PSC marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.

586 views