KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A registered sex offender from Kansas City, Kansas, pleaded guilty in federal court today to crossing state lines to engage in illicit sexual activity with a 14-year-old Missouri victim he met on Facebook.
Montoryon Harris, 44, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Gary A. Fenner to one count of traveling across state lines to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a minor and one count of committing the felony offense while he was required to register as a sex offender.
Harris, who remains in federal custody without bond, has a 1997 felony conviction for aggravated indecent solicitation of a minor.
On Jan. 24, 2019, the Western Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force received a Cybertip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Facebook reported that Harris was suspected of engaging in the sexual exploitation of a child victim. Harris began communicating with the child victim via Facebook on Dec. 14, 2018. Soon afterward, he told her that he wanted to see her in person. Harris’s text messages quickly became sexual in nature.
A law enforcement officer contacted the child victim, who confirmed that Harris drove to her house on Dec. 17, 2018. They engaged in sexual activity in his pickup truck while parked outside her house. Afterward, Harris continued to message the child victim for the purpose of arranging another sexual encounter.
Under federal statutes, Harris is subject to a sentence of up to 30 years in federal prison without parole on the first count, plus a mandatory consecutive sentence of 10 years in federal prison without parole on the second count. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant 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 United States Probation Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David Luna. It was investigated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Western Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force, and the Wyandotte County, Kan., Sheriff’s Department.
Project Safe Childhood
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc . For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”