Springfield, Ill. – A federal grand jury this week returned indictments that charge four men, in separate, unrelated cases with trafficking child pornography. The defendants include two registered sex offenders from Decatur and two men from Rantoul, Ill.:
- Christopher L. Bailey, 39, of the 500 block of Center St., Decatur, Ill., a registered sex offender, is charged with distribution (two counts) and possession (one count) of child pornography.
- Tyler D. Jeffrey, 27, of the 2100 block of Roosevelt Ave., Decatur, Ill., a registered sex offender, is charged with one count of transportation of child pornography.
- William K. Armstrong, 25, of the 1100 block of Falcon Dr., Rantoul, Ill. Armstrong, charged with one count each of transportation and possession of child pornography, was previously arrested and charged on June 12, 2020, by criminal complaint. The complaint alleges that Armstrong possessed approximately 30 video files of minors, including toddler-aged children and prepubescent minors, engaged in sexual activity with others.
- Dwayne White, 55, of the 1300 block of Briarcliffe Dr., Rantoul, Ill. White, indicted on two counts of distribution and one count of possession of child pornography, was arrested and charged in a criminal complaint on June 19, 2020. The complaint alleged that White possessed images of prepubescent minors, aged seven to 10-years old.
The defendants remain in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service at this time. Bailey and Jeffrey were both initially charged by the Macon County State’s Attorney, and made their respective initial appearances on July 9, before U.S. Magistrate Eric I. Long. Judge Long scheduled detention hearings for Bailey and Jeffrey on July 13. Initial trial dates were scheduled for Bailey and Jeffrey on Sept. 8, 2020, before Senior U.S. District Judge Michael M. Mihm. Armstrong and White are scheduled for arraignment on July 22, 2020, before Magistrate Judge Long.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Elly M. Peirson is representing the government in the case prosecutions. The charges result from investigations by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations, the Decatur Police Department; Urbana Police Department; Champaign County Sheriff’s Office; and, the Illinois Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.
If convicted, the statutory penalty for transportation / distribution of child pornography is five to 20 years in prison. For possession of child pornography, the penalty is up to 10 years in prison.
The cases were brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.