DOJ: EX-DOE CONTRACTOR SENTENCED TO 10 YEARS ON CHILD PORN CHARGES

The US Department of Justice announced Tuesday that a former Department of Energy contractor was sentenced to just over 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to charges of possessing and distributing child pornography.

According to the DOJ release, 57-year-old David Bryon King pleaded guilty to charges of possession and distribution of child pornography in federal court in Knoxville on Tuesday and was sentenced to 121 months in prison by US District Judge Thomas Varlan.

The DOJ says that King admitted to possessing child pornography in both 2021 and 2022, and to distributing it in 2022. During the time of the offense, prosecutors say King had been working as a contractor, serving as a fire inspector at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

According to the DOJ, King was identified as having made online payments to individuals suspected of selling child pornography, which led to an interview at his home by agents with the DOE’s Office of Inspector General. During that interview, King reportedly admitted to having child pornography on his smartphone.  Agents seized the device and, after obtaining a federal search warrant to search it, a forensic analysis uncovered images and videos, as well as “other evidence linking King to the attempted distribution of child pornography.”

“Protecting children and holding perpetrators accountable is a top priority for the U.S. Attorney’s Office and we will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to investigate and prosecute child exploitation cases,” said United States Attorney Francis M. Hamilton III in the press release.

King’s decade behind bars will be followed by a lifetime on supervised release.

The case was investigated by the Department of Energy Office of Inspector General as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in 2006, by the DOJ to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Kolman represented the United States in prosecuting the case.