Tioga County Man to Get Federal Prison Time for Child Pornography
A Tioga County man faces up to 20 years in federal prison for possessing dozens of images of child pornography on his phone.
Federal prosecutors say 23-year-old Mahkya Searles pleaded guilty to receipt and possession of child pornography.
The U-S Attorney’s Office says Searles admitted that from April of last year through this past March he searched for and downloaded child pornography from the internet. Authorities say on March 20 he was found to have over 30 images of child porn on his phone, some it involving prepubescent children.
Searles remains in the custody of the United States Marshal’s Service pending sentencing in September.
Meanwhile, a former military man living in Central New York, will spend 25 years in prison followed by a lifetime on parole for purveying child pornography over the internet.
40-year-old Christopher Martinelli is from Syracuse but admitted knowingly exchanging explicit photographs with a 14 year old girl and trading child porn online. He also failed to register as a sex offender under a 2011 conviction while he was in the military.
Martinelli is to be sentenced to 20 years in prison for the child pornography crimes and five years for failing to register as part of his probation conditions, to be served consecutively