PADUCAH, Ky. – Acting United States Attorney Michael A. Bennett announced that a Federal Grand Jury returned an indictment on May 11, 2021, charging Kenneth Swartz, 63, of Eddyville, Kentucky with possession of child pornography and being a felon in possession of a firearm.
According to a Criminal Complaint filed on April 21, 2021, law enforcement officials opened an investigation into Swartz after receiving a complaint alleging that Swartz, a registered sex offender, attempted to photograph a minor while shopping at a local store on May 28, 2020. The Eddyville Police Department confirmed the events after reviewing store security footage. On May 29, 2020, a search warrant was executed on Swartz’ residence. Law enforcement recovered a Savage Arms, Stevens model 94 shotgun, along with several cell phones. On June 24, 2020, law enforcement became aware that Swartz possessed an additional cell phone which he kept hidden under a sink at a residence. A second search warrant was obtained, and the additional phone was seized.
The Paducah Police Department subsequently conducted forensic imaging of the data on the cell phones. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) further analyzed the data and located over 200 images of child pornography.
Swartz has previous felony convictions in Kentucky for the offenses of sexual abuse, first degree, in Bath County in 1998, possession of matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor in Fayette County in 2010, and failure to comply with sex offender registration in Lyon County in 2016.
If convicted at trial, and due to his prior conviction for sexual abuse, Swartz faces not less than 10 years and not more than 20 years in prison for possession of child pornography and not more than 10 years in prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm. There is no parole in the federal system. The case is next scheduled for arraignment on May 27, 2021 at 10:30 a.m. before Magistrate Judge Lanny King.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Raymond McGee and Leigh Ann Dycus. The Eddyville Police Department with the assistance of the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office, the Paducah Police Department, and Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation.
A Criminal Complaint and Indictment are accusations only and
the person is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
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.