Friday, 06 August 2021 15:55

Montgomery County man sentenced for receipt of child pornography

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GREENSBORO – A North Carolina man was sentenced today to 327 months in prison for receipt of  child pornography. 


Ronnie Nelson Clark, 38, was indicted on Sept. 2, 2020, on one count of receipt and attempted receipt of child pornography. He pleaded guilty to the indictment on Feb. 3, 2021. 

According to court documents, in April, 2019, North Carolina Department of Public Safety Probation and Parole officers conducted a compliance check on Clark, who was a registered sex offender under their supervision. Clark was convicted of first-degree rape of a child in Montgomery County Superior Court in 2006 and sentenced to 173 months to 217 months of imprisonment. Clark had completed his term of imprisonment and was under supervision as a result. Clark’s conditions of supervision included limitations on his use of electronic devices and contact with minors, and required him to submit to warrantless searches, including searches of computers and electronic devices. 

When officers arrived at Clark’s residence, they asked to see Clark’s cell phone and saw several text message conversations with what appeared to be underage girls. These conversations were sexual in nature. Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office deputies then obtained search warrants for Clark’s cell phone and residence. MCSO detectives seized two of Clark’s cell phones and a tablet and noted conversations on both cell phones between Clark and underage girls.

In the messages, Clark would ask the girls about their schools and their parents. In most of the messages, Clark referred to the girls as “baby girl,” and the girls referred to Clark as “daddy.” Federal Bureau of Investigation review of one of Clark’s cell phones found images and videos of child pornography and revealed additional conversations that appeared to be with minors using social media applications including Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook Messenger, and the default text messaging application. Clark often asked the girls if they were single and asked their ages. The girls would say their ages, often ages 12 to 14 years old. Clark told the girls he wanted to date them and would ask if age mattered to the girls. Many of the girls told Clark he was too old for them. Clark often tried to convince them otherwise. In one conversation, when the minor indicated she was only 12, Clark responded, “Why does that matter nobody gotta know but us ik you wouldn’t tell on me would u.” Clark asked one person, later identified as an adult purporting to be a 9-year-old, for pictures of her genitals. 

Following release from prison, Clark will be subject to supervised release for life.  

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigations, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s  Office, and the North Carolina Department of Public Safety Probation and Parole and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kennedy Gates.

The case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative by the Department of Justice to combat online child sexual exploitation and abuse. The initiative is led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices  and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, and focuses on coordinating federal, state, and local resources to better identify and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov 

 

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