Tampa, Florida – Marchaun Browning (24, Gibsonton) has pleaded guilty to distributing and possessing images depicting the sexual abuse of children. He faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 years, and up to 70 years, in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set.
According to court documents, in June 2017, Browning created several Twitter accounts. On several different occasions, he posted child sex abuse images and tagged other Twitter accounts associated with public officials, media outlets, and public figures. Browning’s tweets also contained messages directed at the intended and tagged recipients.
Law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Browning’s residence in Gibsonton and seized electronic devices that contained more than 160 images and one video depicting the sexual abuse of children, including some as young as toddlers.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with assistance from the Polk County Sheriff’s Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Frank Murray.
This is another case 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.justice.gov/psc.