Oklahoma Sex Offender Sentenced to 40 Years in Federal Child Porn Case

A Norman man with a prior conviction for possessing child pornography was sentenced in federal court this week for producing child pornography. Anthony Ray Sackett, 35, pleaded guilty this summer in the United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma to a charge of producing child pornography. He faced 25 to 50 years in prison because of a prior Cleveland County conviction of possession of child pornography. On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Joe Heaton sentenced Sackett to 40 years in prison followed by 10 years of supervised release. The case came after Sackett used a cell phone to take pictures and record video of himself engaged in sexually explicit conduct with a 2-year-old girl. He then distributed the images through Kik, a mobile instant messaging app. Typically, producing child pornography is punishable by 15 to 30 years in prison under 18 U.S. Code 2251; however, with a prior sex crime conviction, Sackett's potential sentence was enhanced to a maximum of 50 years. If he were to be subsequently convicted a third time, he would face a maximum life sentence. The prior conviction came in 2002 after Sackett took a computer to a pawn shop. When he did not reclaim the computer within 90 days, shop employees began to prepare the device to sell. In doing so, they came across several images of adult males engaged in sexual activity with minors. They notified authorities and Sackett was arrested and ultimately convicted of possessing child pornography. He served more than two years in prison for child pornography, forgery, and jumping bail before being released in October 2004. In 2011, he was convicted of failing to register as a sex offender and given a 5-year suspended sentence. In Oklahoma, a first offense of possession of child pornography is a Level I sex offense. This is the lowest risk-level classification in Oklahoma, and anyone who is convicted of a Level I sex crime must register as a sex offender each year for 15 years. However, any subsequent sex crime conviction classifies a person as a habitual sex offender. This places him or her in the highest risk-level category as a Level III sex offender. Level III sex offenders must register with local law enforcement every 3 months for life. Sex offender registration carries with it numerous restrictions and prohibitions. It allows public awareness of one's past offense, essentially acting as a modern-day "Scarlet Letter." Lifetime sex offender registration makes this stigma and these challenges inescapable. Learn more about Oklahoma sex offender registration.

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