01/23/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 01/24/2020 13:30
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A Chesapeake, Ohio man was sentenced to federal prison for a sex offense involving a minor, announced United States Attorney Mike Stuart. Johnathan Matthew Taylor, 24, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for traveling in interstate commerce in order to engage in illicit sexual activity with a minor. Following his release from prison, Taylor will serve a seven year term of supervised release and will be required to register as a sex offender.
'My office is receiving so many referrals of cases like this one - it's tragic. I am passionate about protecting our kids,' said United States Attorney Mike Stuart. 'We'll prosecute every single one of these cases- EVERY ONE- to protect West Virginia's children.'
Taylor previously admitted that on June 1, 2019, he communicated via a social messaging application with a minor he believed to be a 15-year-old girl located in Bluefield, West Virginia. Despite knowing her age, Taylor discussed traveling to Bluefield from Ohio to meet the minor to engage in sexual intercourse, but the plans were canceled by the purported minor due to the late hour at which he would arrive. Two days later, on June 3, 2019, Taylor arranged to meet the minor female in Saint Albans, Kanawha County, West Virginia, in order to engage in sexual intercourse. On that same date he traveled from Chesapeake, Ohio to West Virginia, where he purchased condoms before arriving at the location to meet the purported 15-year-old female.
The FBI West Virginia Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Force in conjunction with the West Virginia States Police Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and the Kanawha County Sheriff's Office conducted the investigation. United States District Judge Irene C. Berger presided over the hearing. Assistant United States Attorney Jennifer Rada Herrald handled the prosecution.
This case was prosecuted as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative of the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney's Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute those who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.