Jefferson County man pleads guilty to child porn charges - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Jefferson County man pleads guilty to child porn charges

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - A 66-year-old Jefferson County man pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court to distributing and possessing images of child pornography.

U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance, in a statement Wednesday to FOX6 News, said Walter D. Spruill entered the guilty please before U.S. District Judge Virginia Emerson Hopkins and acknowledged that, between May 20 and June 23, 2010, he used the internet to distribute and possess child pornography.

"Anyone who distributes images of child pornography repeats the hurt those children suffer when the awful images are made, and perpetuates the vile industry that profits from the abuse and devastation of those children," Vance said in the statement. "The community, and those who violate the law need to know that law enforcement is on the Internet working to stop such criminal activity and prosecute those engaging in it."

Vance said according to the plea agreement, Spruill distributed the images to undercover police officers in Indiana and Illinois. On June 23, 2010, he sent an image to an undercover officer in Indiana and told the officer the child was his granddaughter and he was going to molest her that night. The police in Indiana immediately contacted law enforcement in Alabama who obtained and executed a search warrant at Spruill's residence that same day. After additional investigation, police determined the images of that young girl were not pictures of Spruill's granddaughter.

Vance said police did not locate any such child at Spruill's residence, but did find hundreds of images of child pornography on his computer.

Spruill is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 13, 2011. Vance said he faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for distribution of child pornography and 10 years for possession of child pornography.

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