NCAA’s first openly gay wrestler charged for child pornography in New Jersey

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NEWARK, N.J. – A local youth wrestling coach was arrested today on a charge of receipt and distribution of child pornography, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced today.

Alec Donovan, 24, of Brick, New Jersey, a former NJSIAA state wrestling champion is charged by complaint with receipt and distribution of child pornography. He appeared by videoconference before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cathy L. Waldor and was released on $100,000 unsecured bond.

Donovan became the NCAA’s first ever openly gay wrestler while competing at Centenary University. Afterward, he said he wanted to dedicate his life to helping kids. He lost his NCAA scholarship and was red-shirted.

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According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:


Donovan used a messaging application to share videos containing child pornography over the Internet. From January 2021 through March 2021, Donovan sent three videos containing images of child sexual abuse and received two videos containing images of child sexual abuse via the web-based messaging application. The videos Donovan sent and received depicted sexual acts involving pre-pubescent children.

Donovan also used the web-based messaging application to solicit and engage in conversations with minors, including requesting nude photographs from the minors and sending nude photographs to them.

The charge of receipt and distribution of child pornography carries a mandatory minimum penalty of five years in prison, a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison, and a $250,000 fine.

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The FBI’s Newark Field Office is asking anyone with information related to this case or who may be a victim, to contact them at NK-Victim-Assistance@FBI.gov.

Acting U.S. Attorney Honig credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr., with the investigation leading to today’s charge.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Nicole F. Mastropieri of the Health Care Fraud Unit and Shawn Barnes of the Economic Crimes Unit in Newark.

The charge and allegations contained in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.