Registered Sex Offender In Pensacola Arrested For New Federal Child Pornography Offenses | USAO-NDFL


PENSACOLA, FLORIDA – Steven J. McLendon, 36, of Pensacola, was arrested this morning on federal
charges related to the distribution, receipt, and possession of child pornography.  McLendon
is a registered sex offender in the state of Florida stemming from prior convictions for lewd and
lascivious conduct with a minor and child pornography in 2007. Lawrence Keefe, United States
Attorney for the Northern District of Florida, announced the charges today after McLendon
made his initial appearance in federal court in Pensacola.

The allegations against McLendon stem from a months long investigation by the Florida Department of
Law Enforcement in Pensacola. The charges allege that from February through June, 2020, McLendon
was utilizing peer to peer software to distribute and receive child pornography in Pensacola. Upon
the execution of a search warrant at his residence in Pensacola this week, law enforcement is
alleged to have seized multiple pieces of digital evidence containing child pornography. This
includes a device McLendon is alleged to have attempted to hide in his refrigerator.

“Protecting the children of our community against those who would do them harm is a difficult and
serious task. My office is grateful to the men and women of law enforcement who work tirelessly to
rescue children from online sexual exploitation,” U.S. Attorney Keefe said.

“FDLE’s Cyber Squad began this investigation in March and found child pornography involving young
children being victimized,” said FDLE Special Agent in Charge Jack Massey. “McLendon is already on
Florida’s Sex Offender Registry and I appreciate the hard work and dedication of our cyber squad
agents.”

McLendon, because of his prior convictions, faces the following enhanced penalties if convicted:
    • Distribution of Child Pornography – A mandatory minimum of 15 years up to a maximum of 40 years
       in prison;
    • Receipt of Child Pornography – A mandatory minimum of 15 years up to a maximum of 40 years in
       prison;
    •  Possession of Child Pornography – A mandatory minimum of 10 years up to a maximum of 20 years in
        prison; and
    •  Forfeiture of his all the electronics used to commit the offenses.

The case was investigated by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Homeland Security
Investigations, Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office and the North
Florida Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant
United States Attorney David L. Goldberg.

A criminal complaint is merely an allegation that a defendant has committed a violation of federal
criminal law and is not evidence of guilt. All defendants are presumed innocent and entitled to a
fair trial, during which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable
doubt at trial.

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Florida is one of 94 offices that
serve as the nation’s principal litigators under the direction of the Attorney General. To access
public court documents online, please visit the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of
Florida
website.  For more information about the United States Attorney’s Office, Northern
a, visit http://www.justice.gov/usao/fln/index.html.



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