The Growing Scourge Of Online Child Pornography In The United States

Dennis Jackson, 39, of Lake City, Florida has been sentenced to 11.5 years in federal prison for receiving images and videos of child sexual abuse. He pled guilty on March 09, 2022, and has been detained since his arrest on July 22, 2021.

Jackson was also ordered by the court to serve a 20-year term of supervised release, to register as a sex offender, and to forfeit the phone he used to receive the images and videos of children being sexually abused.

The FBI initiated an investigation of a private chat group that catered to people interested in sexual activity between fathers and daughters and in which files of child sexual abuse material were regularly shared. After authorities identified a John Jackson, the Columbia County Sheriff's Office and the FBI executed a search warrant at the Jacksons' residence in Lake City.

When they reviewed seized electronic devices, the FBI discovered that John Jackson was distributing videos of the sexual assault of children to his brother, Dennis Jackson. Also, the two brothers had exchanged messages about the "need" to rape a 15-year-old child with whom John Jackson had been communicating with, and of whom Dennis Jackson requested nude photos.

Recorded interviews of Dennis Jackson revealed he admitted to distributing and receiving child sexual abuse material for the last two years. He also admitted to receiving approximately 1,500 files of such material and distributed files dozens of times.

The U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida, "Lake City Man Sentenced To Eleven Years In Federal Prison For Trading Child Sexual Abuse Material With His Brother" https://www.justice.gov/usao-mdfl/pr/lake-city-man-sentenced-eleven-years-federal-prison-trading-child-sexual-abuse-material (Jul. 20, 2022).

Commentary and Checklist

Online child pornography, a type of child sexual abuse, is a growing scourge. According to a report by the MIT Technology Review, “The US now hosts more child sexual abuse material online than any other country.” The report says the US accounted for 30 percent of the worldwide total of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) URLs at the end of March 2022, according to the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), up from 21 percent at the end of 2021.

As illustrated by the intentions of the men in the article, 80 percent of those who purchase child pornography have sexually molested children, according to the U.S. Postal Service.

Child pornography is a federal and state crime. Unfortunately, the internet platforms that people use every day to connect with each other and share information, are also being used to disseminate and collect this material

What can safe adults do if they observe child pornography on another ‘s device?

  • If you find it on someone else's phone or computer, preserve any evidence, if possible.
  • If you find it on the internet, note the name of the website, chat room, or newsgroup where you saw the suspected child pornography.
  • Report to law enforcement or child protective services immediately.
  • A report can also be made online at the NCMEC CyberTipline or via the phone at 1-800-843-5678.
  • If you receive child pornography through unsolicited e-mail, note the sender's screen name and ISP (Internet Service Provider) and forward the entire message (do not copy and paste) to the FBI.
  • DO NOT download the child pornography yourself in order to help the FBI. You may not download such an image to your hard drive, disk, or printer without breaking the law.
  • Rely on law enforcement to conduct the investigation into the crime. Assist authorities with their investigation, if requested.
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