Commonwealth Journal

June 17, 2013

Sentencing reset for man who pleaded guilty to child porn charges

By CHRIS HARRIS, CJ Staff Writer
Commonwealth Journal

Somerset —

A local man accused of producing and possessing child pornography appeared in U.S. District Court on Friday.
Eric Whitson, 36, with counsel Jerry Cox, made an oral motion to continue sentencing, according to court documents accessed electronically by the Commonwealth Journal.
Whitson’s sentencing was originally scheduled for this past week after Whitson pleaded guilty in February to one county of producing child pornography and one county of possession of child pornography.
Judge Danny Reeves ruled to sustain the motion, with no objections from the prosecuting attorneys, and sentencing was reset for July 12, 2013 in U.S. District Court in London, Ky.
Following the February re-arraignment, it was learned that the prosecution moved to recommended 180 months, or 15 years, in prison for Whitson based on his charges.
Whitson had also been charged with two counts of receiving child pornography, but the U.S. moved to dismiss those charges following a plea deal.
Whitson was arrested on November 21 by Somerset Police Department detectives and agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation at his home on Cooper Drive in Somerset. Authorities were carrying out a federal arrest warrant based on evidence of child pornography found on items taken from Whitson’s home during a search. 
The arrest came after a two-week joint investigation conducted by SPD and the FBI, which began on November 5 after SPD received a complaint from an alleged adult victim who stated he’d discovered a camera in Whitson’s bathroom. The camera was reportedly positioned at groin height and faced over the toilet tank to catch the view of a male’s genitals when standing and urinating.
Images captured by the recorder could be viewed in real time in Whitson’s bedroom, according to the details of the plea agreement.