News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local & Bistate

August 21, 2013

Plea agreement reached in child porn case

TERRE HAUTE — A Terre Haute man arrested in March for possessing child pornography has filed a petition in federal court to enter a guilty plea.

Emery Norton, 26, is expected to plead guilty to one count of receiving child pornography during an Aug. 29 hearing at the U.S. Courthouse in Indianapolis. According to the plea agreement, Norton faces a sentence of five to 20 years in federal prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and post-prison supervised release ranging from five years to life.

An information filed Monday stated that Norton received more than 10,000 images and video files that contained visual depictions of minors in sexually explicit conduct.

He was arrested in late March 2013, when a search warrant was executed as part of an Operation Safe Childhood investigation into child pornography. An Indiana State Police detective investigating online pornography located a person online who was sharing child pornography. The images were traced to a computer at Norton’s home on Liberty Avenue, police said.

After receiving Norton’s consent, investigators conducted forensic examinations of Norton’s desktop computer and laptop computer at his home and found images and videos depicting child pornography. Later, investigators located a “thumb drive” that contained more images and videos.

U.S. Attorney Joseph Hogsett spoke about the Norton case on Tuesday during a news conference, and said that anyone who engages in the transmission, receipt or possession of sexual material exploiting children can expect to be prosecuted.

“These cases are always difficult, both as a prosecutor and as a parent,” Hogsett said. “But they are important, not just to ensure the safety of Hoosier children, but also to send a message that we will not tolerate such behavior in our communities. You are not anonymous online — if you engage in this activity, we will find you, and you will be held accountable.”

A sentencing date will be set for Norton at the change of plea hearing.

Reporter Lisa Trigg can be reached at 812-231-4254 or lisa.trigg@tribstar.com. Follow her on Twitter@TribStarLisa.

 

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