SYRACUSE, NEW YORK – Kevin Couture, a/k/a “travelsizepocket,” 40, of Chicago, Illinois, appeared yesterday in federal court on a charge that he attempted to entice a minor into sexual activity.
The announcement was made by United States Attorney Carla B. Freedman and Janeen DiGuiseppi, Special Agent in Charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
According to the criminal complaint, Couture exchanged weeks of sexually explicit messages with undercover law enforcement officers posing as the child, who Couture believed to be 9 years old, and the child’s mother. Before his arrest yesterday, Couture travelled from his home in Chicago, Illinois to Oneida County, New York with gifts for the child with whom Couture intended to engage in sexual activity upon his arrival.
The charges in the complaint are merely accusations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, Couture faces at least 10 years and up to life in prison, a term of post-release supervision of at least 5 years and up to life, and a fine of up to $250,000. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors. Additionally, if convicted, Couture would be required to register as a sex offender.
Couture appeared today before United States Magistrate Judge Thérèse Wiley Dancks, who ordered Couture detained pending trial.
This case is being investigated by the FBI and its Child Exploitation Task Force, which includes members of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. This case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Adrian S. LaRochelle as part of Project Safe Childhood.
Launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, Project Safe Childhood is led by United States Attorney’s offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS). Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend 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 https://www.justice.gov/psc.