URBANA, Ill. - A local man was sentenced on Tuesday to almost 22 years in federal prison for receiving, distributing and possessing child pornography. The sentence resulted from an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
David Eugene Stevens, 36, of Ashmore, Ill., was sentenced Dec. 21 in the Central District of Illinois to 262 months in prison without parole after he pleaded guilty to the child pornography charges in August. Stevens was also ordered to serve a lifetime term of supervised release after he completes his prison sentence.
A grand jury indicted Stevens on Oct. 7, 2009, on charges of receiving, distributing and possessing child pornography. Stevens admitted to using a computer file-sharing program to download and share images of child pornography. Forensic analysis of Stevens' computer revealed 41 videos containing child pornography and 33 images of child pornography on his computer. The videos and images were received between June and October 2008. Stevens has remained in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service since his arrest on Oct. 9, 2009.
The charges against Stevens were investigated by a working group of law enforcement officers from ICE HSI; the Illinois Attorney General's Office; Decatur Police Department; the Coles County Sheriff's Department; and the Mattoon Police Department.
This investigation was part of Operation Predator, a nationwide ICE initiative to identify, investigate and arrest aimed at those who prey on children, including human traffickers, international sex tourists, Internet pornographers, and foreign national predators whose crimes make them deportable.
ICE encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423. This hotline is staffed around the clock by investigators.
Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.