The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Crime & Courts

August 7, 2012

Joplin man sentenced to prison in child-pornography case

JOPLIN, Mo. — A Joplin man was assessed 10 years in prison for possessing child pornography in file-sharing software on his home computer.

Circuit Judge Gayle Crane assessed Roger R. Russell, 22, the prison term at a hearing Monday in Jasper County Circuit Court.

Russell pleaded guilty May 21 to a Class B felony count of possession of child pornography in a plea deal limiting the sentence he might be assessed to no more than 10 years. The offense carries a penalty of five to 15 years in prison.

The defendant was charged in July of last year after an investigation by Detective Chip Root of the Joplin Police Department and the Southwest Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force.

A probable-cause affidavit states that Root discovered 245 files made available on the Internet by file-sharing software on Russell’s computer. Twenty-two of the files had common child-pornography search terms in their titles, according to the affidavit.

After downloading one of the files and confirming that it contained child pornography, the detective obtained and executed a search warrant July 26, 2011, at the defendant’s home at 1032 S. Connor Ave. The affidavit states that a forensic preview of the defendant’s computer revealed several suspected child-porn videos and image files.

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