Nassau County man pleads guilty to producing child porn
Acting United States Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow announced in a news release on Monday that Charles Cory Thornton, 37, has pleaded guilty to using hidden cameras in his bathroom to produce pornographic images and videos of an unsuspecting child. The Yulee man faces a minimum mandatory penalty of 15 years, up to 30 years, in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set.
According to court documents, on July 20, FBI agents executed a search warrant at Thornton’s residence based on suspected online child exploitation activity. When interviewed, Thornton admitted that he had been searching for child pornography online for several years, and that he was sexually attracted to children, according to the release.
The agents seized several cameras and other computer media from the home. Forensic analyses revealed that, from January 2007 through August 2010, Thornton produced at least 88 videos of four different children changing clothes in the bathroom of his home in Florida and the bathroom of a cabin in Virginia. Thornton surreptitiously recorded these videos using tiny cameras hidden in different spots in the bathrooms. Many of the videos captured explicit close-up footage of the children.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney D. Rodney Brown.
It is another case 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 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.