From The Tribune staff reports
PINSON — A federal judge sentenced a Pinson man Tuesday for distribution of child pornography.
United States District Judge R. David Proctor sentenced Chadwick Rice, 48, to 188 months in prison followed by a lifetime of supervised release. In March 2020, Rice pleaded guilty to distribution of child pornography. Rice was previously convicted of three counts of possession of child pornography in Jefferson County in 2016.
This conviction required him to register as a sex offender.
“There is zero tolerance for those who continue to break the law to engage in the sexual exploitation of children,” said U.S. Attorney Escalona. “Law enforcement will continue to vigilantly monitor the internet using every method available to us in order to uncover evidence of child exploitation and abuse so that we can protect children from such offenders.”
“This case not only exemplifies the great work of my agents and our partners, but also the importance of citizens saying something when they see something of concern,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Johnnie Sharp. “Thanks in part to information provided by a citizen tip to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) Cyber Tip Line, law enforcement was able to stop Rice from victimizing any other children.”
“The community can rest a little easier knowing that this serial offender is no longer free to spread the filth that victimizes our most vulnerable population, said Special Agent in Charge Katrina W. Berger. “HSI and its law enforcement partners remain committed to find, arrest and prosecute those who seek to steal the innocence of our youth.”
In March 2018, a search warrant was executed at Rice’s home in Pinson, where child pornography was located on Rice’s Samsung Galaxy cell phone. During a forensic review of Rice’s cell phone, 771 images of children being sexually exploited were identified. Rice admitted he had various apps on his cell phone that he used to trade videos of child pornography with other individuals.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse, launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.