June 15, 2024

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Former Pinch Elementary Counselor Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison for Child Exploitation Crimes | USAO-SDWV

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Former Pinch Elementary Counselor Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison for Child Exploitation Crimes | USAO-SDWV

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Todd Christopher Roatsey, 43, of Elkview, a former counselor at Pinch Elementary Faculty in Kanawha County, was sentenced now to 25 decades in jail, to be followed by a life span of supervised launch, for attempted generation of youngster pornography and tried enticement of a minimal. Roatsey should also spend $23,000 in restitution to his victims and register as a sexual intercourse offender.

In accordance to courtroom paperwork and statements built in court docket, commencing in January 2020, Roatsey communicated by means of the Snapchat immediate messaging application with a person woman he considered to be 16 and a next feminine he considered also to be a minor. Roatsey admitted that he posed as an 18-year-old boy even though persuading every to file and ship him several sexually explicit videos that depicted each individual woman masturbating. Roatsey even more admitted that he sent both girls video clips of himself masturbating.

Roatsey also made use of this Snapchat account to converse with several minimal women he understood by means of his situation as a Pinch Elementary Faculty counselor. These communications incorporated extra than 100 Snapchat films that Roatsey recorded even though communicating with two insignificant girls, each close to 12 years previous. 1 was a college student at Pinch Elementary at the time. During these conversations, Roatsey been given numerous videos of the insignificant females executing what he identified as “sexy” dance routines or gymnastics poses these as entire backbends. The insignificant women normally wore only athletics bras and shorts in these films. Roatsey admitted to responding to these films by telling the insignificant ladies they have been “hot” and “sexy.”

The Court docket identified Roatsey experienced prompted “incalculable damage” to his victims.

“As an elementary faculty counselor, Roatsey deliberately positioned himself in a posture of belief about the sorts of little ones to whom he was sexually attracted,” claimed United States Legal professional Will Thompson. “In our communities, faculties are the only constant for a great deal of youngsters. A large amount of the time, university is the harmless position. The reality that Mr. Roatsey made this not a risk-free spot was, I uncover, to be incredibly horrific.”

Roatsey even more admitted to distributing, acquiring, possessing, and accessing baby pornography, together with photographs and video clips depicting infants and toddlers, through a variety of media concerning at minimum October 9, 2019, by way of July 16, 2021. Roatsey possessed little one pornography on products seized from his residence, together with his mobile phone, and on the encrypted cloud-based mostly file storage service Mega. Making use of the two Mega and the messaging application Kik, Roatsey distributed many images and videos of prepubescent minors engaged in sexually specific conduct to other individuals.

On October 28, 2021, the U.S. Section of Homeland Protection-Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) executed a research warrant at Roatsey’s residence and seized a lot of digital gadgets identified to include youngster pornography. Roatsey admitted that numerous several hours right after law enforcement completed the lookup and remaining his residence, he deleted the Snapchat account he applied to have interaction in these functions. By deleting the account, Roatsey obstructed justice by making numerous Snapchat records inaccessible to legislation enforcement and unavailable for any subsequent federal prosecution.

Thompson manufactured the announcement and recommended the investigative do the job of the U.S. Division of Homeland Stability – Homeland Stability Investigations (HSI) and the West Virginia State Law enforcement.

“Today’s sentencing is reflective of just how despicable and detrimental Todd Roatsey’s crimes versus youngsters are and emphasizes HSI’s devotion to holding perpetrators accountable,” said Performing Specific Agent in Charge Derek W. Gordon of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Washington, D.C.  “Today’s sentence sends an important message to all predators. We will not let any criminal offense towards youngsters to go unpunished. HSI is committed to shielding our most vulnerable inhabitants against sexual predators who look for to choose gain of their innocence.”

Senior United States District Judge John T. Copenhaver, Jr. imposed the sentence. Assistant United States Attorney Jennifer Rada Herrald prosecuted the case.

This situation was prosecuted as section of Undertaking Harmless Childhood, a nationwide initiative of the Section of Justice to battle the escalating epidemic of little one sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Little one Exploitation and Obscenity Part, Challenge Harmless Childhood marshals federal, condition, and community resources to identify, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit little ones, and to determine and rescue victims. For additional information and facts about Project Safe Childhood, be sure to pay a visit to www.justice.gov/psc.

A copy of this press launch is located on the web site of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia. Related court docket documents and facts can be uncovered on PACER by looking for Situation No. 2:21-cr-235.

 

 

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