TEXARKANA, Texas – A 32-year-old Texarkana, Texas, man has pleaded guilty to distribution of child pornography in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney Stephen J. Cox today.
Troy Dewayne Daniels pleaded guilty on August 6, 2020, to distributing child pornography before U.S. Magistrate Judge Caroline M. Craven. In his plea agreement, Daniels agreed to pay restitution to his victims, to register as a sex offender, and to be sentenced to a life term of supervised release following his imprisonment.
According to information presented in court, in October 2019, Daniels used social media apps to communicate with an undercover law enforcement officer. During the conversation, Daniels described his progress in grooming a female child for sexual exploitation, including stating that he was “hoping” to go “[a]ll the way” with her. During the conversation, Daniel admitted to the undercover officer that he had been looking at pictures and videos of younger girls “for a while.” Daniels then sent the undercover officer an image of child pornography claiming that the prepubescent female child depicted looked like the child he had been grooming. Daniels did so in exchange for non-pornographic images of the undercover officer’s (fictional) daughter. Several days later, Daniels reached out to the undercover officer and asked if he could “play” with the officer’s (fictional) daughter on Snapchat. In November 2019, law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Daniels’s home. Inside, officers found electronic devices containing more than 600 images of child pornography. The images found depicted prepubescent minors, sadistic or masochistic abuse or other depictions of violence, and depictions of the sexual exploitation of infants and toddlers.
Under federal statutes, Daniels faces a minimum of 5 years and up to 20 years in federal prison at sentencing. The statutory sentence prescribed by Congress is provided here for information purposes, as the sentencing will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Texas is committed to the protection of our children. Advances in technology over the past two decades have brought about new obstacles for parents, educators, and law enforcement. No longer are children safe in their own homes. No longer can teachers and parents let their guard down when our children are in the classroom, library, or even in their own home. The statistics are alarming. One in five children per year receives an unwanted sexual solicitation online. One in 33 children per year receives an aggressive sexual solicitation. And perhaps most disturbing, at any given time, 50,000 predators are on the Internet actively seeking out children. This office is committed to aggressively implementing programs and targeting those who would harm children in order to provide a safer environment for all children. More information and resources for parents and educators are available at https://www.justice.gov/usao-edtx/project-safe-childhood.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan R. Hornok.