KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A former paraprofessional at Blue Springs High School pleaded guilty in federal court today to producing and distributing child pornography.
Steven B. Allen, 45, of Independence, Mo., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Roseann Ketchmark to two counts of producing child pornography and one count of distributing child pornography over the internet. Allen, who has been in federal custody since his arrest on Nov. 25, 2019, remains detained until his sentencing hearing.
At the time of the offense, Allen worked as a paraprofessional at Blue Springs High School.
By pleading guilty today, Allen admitted that he used two minor victims to produce child pornography and distributed those images, and others, to individuals over the internet. Allen also admitted he had been sharing images of child pornography over the internet every couple of days for the past five to six years.
According to today’s plea agreement, Allen began communicating over the internet with an undercover officer in the United Kingdom in June 2019. The undercover officer purported to be the father of a 10-year-old girl. Allen sent the undercover officer numerous images of one of the minor victims. He also discussed participating in and fantasizing about sexually abusing the undercover officer’s daughter.
On Oct. 7, 2019, law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Allen’s residence and seized numerous electronic devices that contained more than 9,200 images and 89 videos of child pornography, including more than 800 images of infants and toddlers being sexually assaulted, 65 images of violent sexual acts, and two images of bestiality.
Allen also produced a number of images and videos of prepubescent girls using a waterproof camera at a community swimming pool.
Under the terms of his plea agreement, Allen must pay $5,000 to each of the nine victims who have petitioned for restitution from every person who received or possessed pictures of their sexual abuse, or $3,000 if he can pay restitution within 30 days of his sentencing.
Allen is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in federal prison without parole. 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 Kenneth W. Borgnino. It was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations.
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.”