PITTSBURGH – A resident of Rochester, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of possession of material depicting the sexual exploitation of a minor, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today.
Elijah Winchester, 23, pleaded guilty to one count before Senior United States District Judge Joy Flowers Conti.
In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that in May 2018, law enforcement became aware that Winchester, who was 21 years old at the time, was involved in a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old female. After Winchester denied the relationship, law enforcement obtained a search warrant for his phone. A forensic review of the phone revealed 14 pornographic videos involving the minor. In some of the videos, both Winchester’s face and the minor’s face are visible.
Judge Conti scheduled sentencing for June 17, 2020 at 10 a.m. The law provides for a total sentence of 10 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Pending sentencing, the court ordered that Winchester remained detained.
Assistant United States Attorney Lee J. Karl is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
The Western Pennsylvania Violent Crimes Against Children Task Force, the Beaver Police Department and the Beaver County District Attorney’s Office conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Winchester.
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