Ross Pleads Guilty in Child Pornography Case

CLEARFIELD – A DuBois man accused of having child pornography pleaded guilty Tuesday during sentencing court.

Jarrod Andrew Ross, 21, was sentenced to 90 days to one year in jail and three years consecutive probation for a felony count of child pornography and corruption of minors.

President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman also ordered him to attend sex offender counseling and to have no unsupervised contact with any male under the age of 18.

The original plea was for a 30-day sentence, but this was rejected by Ammerman, who required a 90-day minimum. Ross agreed to this, but asked for a delayed commitment to avoid conflicts with his school schedule. He was told to report to the jail on July 5.

The charges were filed by state police after an investigation by Reynoldsville Police in November of 2014. An officer was investigating Ross, who had nude photos of several underage males on his cell phone. Ross was able to obtain the photos from the victims because Ross posed as a woman online, according to the affidavit.

While the officer was reviewing the photos, he recognized one of the juveniles and knew this victim lived in DuBois. He then contacted state police about it.

When an officer spoke with the victim in September of 2015, he remembered getting a friend request on Facebook from a girl named Lacey, who was a good-looking blonde woman about 18 or 19 years old around the time of the crime.

He accepted the request and the two started talking. When “she” asked how old he was, he told her he was 16, when he was really only 15 years old at that time. They continued to send messages via Facebook and the conversation became sexual in nature.

“Lacey” sent him a topless photo and requested photos of the victim in return, he told police. The victim sent 17 photos of which six or eight were frontal nudes.

After the fourth day of talking and sending photos, Lacey stopped responding to his messages. He said he tried to figure out why she was not responding, but gave up and moved on, forgetting about the whole thing until the police contacted him.

The victim was able to identify himself in the photos. He told police he was not aware that “Lacey” was actually a guy posing as a woman.

In his interview with police, Ross said he knew the victim and a friend told him the victim thought he was cute. Ross stated that the victim knew he was a man.

He admitted they conversed on Facebook and their conversations were sexual in nature. He also admitted that they exchanged explicit photos and that the victim told him he was 16 years old.

Ross pleaded guilty in Jefferson County to one count of possession of child pornography in May and was sentenced to two years probation.

Ross also underwent an assessment to determine if he was a predator. According to online court documents, he was found not to be a sexually violent predator.

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