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UPDATE - Former school aide sentenced to 75 years

UPDATE 8/22/2017- Greenbelt, Maryland – US District Judge Deborah K. Chasanow sentenced Deonte Carraway, age 23, of Glenarden, Maryland, to 75 years in federal prison followed by a lifetime of supervised release for 15 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor to produce child pornography, involving 12 minor victims ranging in age from nine to 13 years old.  According to court documents, Carraway was an assistant at Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School in Prince George’s County. 

The sentence was announced by Acting United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Stephen M. Schenning; Special Agent in Charge Gordon Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; Chief Henry P. Stawinski III of the Prince George’s County Police Department; and Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela D. Alsobrooks.

            According to the 15-count superseding indictment, from October 11, 2015 through February 1, 2016, Carraway coerced and persuaded multiple children to engage in sexually explicit conduct in order to produce videos of that conduct.  According to the plea agreement, the videos produced include Carraway engaging in sexual activity with victims, as well as the victims engaging in sexually explicit conduct at Carraway’s direction. 

According to court documents, Carraway met several of the victims at the school where he worked, and other victims reported that Carraway recruited them from his choir group. Prince George’s County Police arrested Carraway on February 4, 2016, and he has been detained since his arrest.

This case was investigated by the FBI Maryland Child Exploitation Task Force (MCETF), created in 2010 to combat sex crimes involving children. The task force consists of members from ten state and federal law enforcement agencies.

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.justice.gov/psc.  For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.justice.gov/psc and click on the "resources" tab on the left of the page.
                       
Acting United States Attorney Stephen M. Schenning commended the FBI, the Prince George’s County Police Department, and the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation.  Mr. Schenning thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kristi N. O’Malley and Daniel C. Gardner who prosecuted the case.


UPDATE - Greenbelt, MD - Deonte Carraway, age 22, of Glenarden, Maryland, pleaded guilty Monday, Jan. 30 to 15 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor to produce child pornography, involving 12 minor victims ranging in age from nine to 13 years old. 

The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; Chief Hank Stawinski of the Prince George’s County Police Department; and Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela D. Alsobrooks.

“Deonte Carraway abused at least 12 child victims,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “Fortunately, an alert relative checked a child’s smartphone, found an inappropriate photo and called the police. That call may have prevented more children from being abused.”

“I am extremely proud of the collaborative effort put forth by the FBI Maryland Child Exploitation Task Force in order to ensure this defendant was brought to justice and will no longer be able to terrorize or threaten children again,” said Special Agent Gordon B. Johnson of the FBI’s Baltimore Division. “Knowing the defendant will serve the next 60-100 years in federal prison, signals that the FBI and our partners will not tolerate such behavior. Our community just got a lot safer today.”

“Carraway violated the public’s trust by putting himself in a position to harm children.  One of the worst crimes a person can commit is when the victim is an innocent child.  I am particularly pleased by the collaboration between the Prince George’s County Police department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Attorney’s Office, and the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office in bringing him to justice,” said Prince George’s County Police Chief Hank P. Stawinski.

“I would like to thank the U.S. Attorney’s Office for their efforts that have ensured that Mr. Carraway is being held accountable for his actions,” Alsobrooks said. “I also want to thank them for the continued collaboration with our office as we work towards our prosecution of Mr. Carraway, which will commence following the conclusion of his case in federal court.”

According his plea agreement, between September 2015 and February 2016, Carraway was an unpaid Dedicated Assistant at a Prince George’s County elementary school.  Prior to becoming a Dedicated Assistant, Carraway served as a paid teacher’s assistant at the elementary school since 2014.  Carraway also directed a children’s choir at a Prince George’s County church.  Through these roles, Carraway gained the trust of parents who entrusted their children to Carraway’s care in their residences.

Carraway admitted that between at least October 2015 and February 2016, he engaged in sex acts with children between the ages of nine and 11 years old, using a cellular phone to record the sexual acts.  Carraway also directed the children to engage in sex acts with each other, recording those acts on cellular phones, as well.  Carraway directed the children to record sexual acts and provided the victims with cellular phones to use for that purpose. Carraway reached out to minor males and encouraged them to provide Carraway with images and videos of children engaged in sexually explicit conduct.  Carraway also sent his child victims images of himself exposing his penis and engaging in sexually explicit conduct, as well as images of other children engaged in such acts.  Carraway admitted that he founded a club with children and requested that children who wanted to join the club send Carraway sexually explicit images of themselves via cell phone messenger applications.

Carraway and the government have agreed that if the Court accepts the plea agreement Carraway will be sentenced to between 60 and 100 years in prison.  U.S. District Judge Deborah K. Chasanow has scheduled sentencing for June 5, 2017 at 9:30 a.m. Carraway has been detained since his arrest on February 5, 2016. Related charges filed in Prince George’s County Circuit Court are still pending.

The case was investigated by the FBI Maryland Child Exploitation Task Force (MCETF) and the Prince George’s County Police Department.  The task force was created in 2010 to combat sex crimes involving children and is made up of members from ten state and federal law enforcement agencies.

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.


Previous story

Greenbelt, MD - March 1  A federal grand jury today returned an indictment charging Deonte Carraway, age 22, of Glenarden, Maryland, with thirteen counts of sexual exploitation of a minor to produce child pornography, involving 11 minor victims ranging in age from nine to 12 years old.  According to court documents, Carraway was an assistant for Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School in Prince George’s County.  This indictment replaces the criminal complaint filed last week, which included eight counts involving six victims.


The indictment was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Kevin Perkins of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; Chief Hank Stawinski of the Prince George’s County Police Department; and Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela D. Alsobrooks.

“Federal authorities will continue to work with Prince George’s County police and prosecutors to identify additional victims, provide appropriate counseling, and hold the perpetrator accountable,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein.

According to the 13-count indictment, from October 11, 2015 through February 1, 2016, Carraway coerced and persuaded multiple children to engage in sexually explicit conduct in order to produce videos of that conduct.  According to the indictment, the images produced include Carraway engaging in sexual activity with victims, as well as the victims engaging in sexually explicit conduct at Carraway’s direction.

According to court documents, Carraway met several of the victims at the school where he worked and other victims reported that Carraway recruited them from his choir group. Prince George’s County Police arrested Carraway on February 4, 2016, and he remains detained on related state charges.

Carraway faces a minimum mandatory sentence of 15 years in prison and a maximum of 30 years in prison followed by up to lifetime of supervised release for each of the 13 counts of production of child pornography.  Carraway has an initial appearance scheduled in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt on Friday, March 4, 2016 at 2:00 p.m. before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jillyn K Schulze.  Carraway remains detained on the related state charges.

The investigation is ongoing and investigators are asking anyone with information about possible victims or details about Mr. Carraway to call 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324).

An indictment is not a finding of guilt.  An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.

The case is being investigated by the FBI Maryland Child Exploitation Task Force (MCETF), created in 2010 to combat sex crimes involving children, made up of members from ten state and federal law enforcement agencies.

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.justice.gov/psc.  For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.justice.gov/psc and click on the "resources" tab on the left of the page.     

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the FBI, Prince George’s County Police Department, and Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation.  Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Daniel C. Gardner and Kristi N. O’Malley, who are prosecuting the case.

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