An Illinois man has been sentenced to 30 years in prison followed by lifetime supervised release for production and possession of child pornography. The sentencing was announced by Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney John C. Milhiser of the Central District of Illinois.
The sentencing was pronounced by U.S. District Court Judge James E. Shadid. The 21-year old Tyler Watson pleaded guilty to two counts of production of child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography. He pleaded guilty in front of U.S. Magistrate Judge Jonathan E. Hawley on Aug. 19, 2019.
As part of his guilty plea, admissions revealed that Bloomington Police Department spotted Watson while home on leave from active duty in the U.S. Navy. Using information from one of Watson’s acquaintance, police officers had discovered sexually explicit pictures Watson had taken of a 6-year-old boy on Watson’s cellphone, as well as other child pornography images.
Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) subsequently interrogated Watson and admitted to possessing, distributing and producing child pornography. A forensic examination of his electronic media subsequently revealed that he had communicated with and received sexually explicit images from other minors via the internet.
Bloomington Police Department and NCIS investigated the case with assistance from the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section’s (CEOS) High Tech Investigative Unit and the FBI. CEOS Trial Attorney Nadia Prinz and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Paul Morris and Adam W. Ghrist of the Central District of Illinois prosecuted the case.