Cary man sentenced to nearly 6 years in prison on child pornography charges
Posted February 28, 2020 5:30 p.m. EST
Updated February 28, 2020 5:52 p.m. EST
Cary, N.C. — On Thursday, a district judge sentenced a Cary man to nearly six years in prison after the man pleaded guilty to receipt of child pornography.
Christopher Thomas Ward, 37, of Cary, was sentenced to 70 months in prison, followed by a 10-year term of supervised release. Ward pleaded guilty pursuant to a plea agreement on September 25, 2019 to one count of receipt of child pornography.
A 2017 investigation into a file-sharing network identified Ward’s IP address as advertising known child pornography files, which were directly downloaded from Ward's IP address on multiple dates.
Law enforcement identified Ward's residence, and obtained a search warrant. Investigators executed the warrant on December 15, 2017 and seized numerous electronic devices.
Ward agreed to speak with investigators, and during the interview, admitted to searching for, downloading and storing child pornography.
A forensic review of the seized devices determined that Ward had amassed hundreds of thousands of files containing pornographic images and videos.
This case is part of the Project Safe Childhood initiative, a national program aimed at ensuring that criminals exploiting children are effectively prosecuted by making full use of all available law enforcement resources at every level.
The Cary Police Department (CPD), Cary, North Carolina, and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) conducted the investigation of this case.