SAVANNAH, GA: A Chatham County man was sentenced to 10 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of possession of hundreds of images of child sexual exploitation.
Michael Todd Morris, 27, of Savannah, was sentenced to 120 months in prison after a U.S. District Court jury previously found him guilty of Possession of Child Pornography, said David H. Estes, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. U.S. District Court Judge R. Stan Baker also ordered Morris to pay $19,000 in restitution, to register as a sex offender, and to serve 15 years of supervised release after completion of his prison term. There is no parole in the federal system.
“Images that sexually exploit children are visual reminders of the victimization of the vulnerable,” said U.S. Attorney Estes. “This sentence should serve as a warning to anyone who would possess such vile imagery that we and our law enforcement partners will find them and hold them accountable.”
A jury convicted Morris of Possession of Child Pornography in October 2021 after a three-day trial, where evidence and testimony proved that he possessed hundreds of images of child sexual exploitation and child erotica. Homeland Security Investigations, alerted via a cyber tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, discovered the images on electronic devices in Morris’ possession.
“Every time these disturbing images are viewed it re-victimizes an innocent person and prevents them from healing from this trauma; this is why stopping the collection and distribution of these images is so important,” said Special Agent in Charge Katrina W. Berger, who oversees Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) operations in Georgia and Alabama. “This defendant will now face the consequences for his actions thanks to the great work done by HSI and its law enforcement partners.”
The case was investigated under the Department of Justice Project Safe Childhood initiative by Homeland Security Investigations, and prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorney and Project Safe Childhood Coordinator Tara M. Lyons.
Anyone with information on suspected child sexual exploitation can contact the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 800-843-5678, or https://report.cybertip.org/.