Created on Friday, 19 July 2013 Written by THE BELLEFONTAINE EXAMINER STAFF
COLUMBUS — Justin Stewart Mote, 33, of Marysville, was sentenced in U.S. District Court to 25 years in prison for coercing or enticing a minor to engage in illegal sexual activity. He will also be under court supervision for the rest of his life.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood , a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. The conviction of Quincy resident Mickell E. Close also was made possible through this effort.
Mr. Mote pleaded guilty Feb. 21 to one count of using the Internet to coerce or entice a minor to engage in unlawful sexual activity.
According to testimony presented during the plea hearing, the defendant met a 12-year-old online and went to Connecticut and Pennsylvania to visit the minor in 2012.
Franklin County Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force investigators received information from a Newtown, Conn., police officer in October after the child’s father found letters, text messages and gifts from the defendant. Investigators executed a search warrant at Mr. Mote’s residence and found fully nude photographs of the victim on various media devices including a tablet computer.
“Sexual predators present a grave danger to the community,” U.S. Attorney Carter M. Stewart said. “Few crimes damage our society more than crimes of child exploitation.”
The suspect, who was under indictment on state charges of attempted unlawful sexual contact with a minor and importuning in connection with a separate incident that occurred in August 2011, was arrested. He has been in custody since his arrest.
U.S. District Judge Edmund A. Sargus Jr. also ordered Mote to undergo a sexual offender treatment program offered by the U.S. Bureau of Prisons.