Knox County 19-year-old sentenced to 10 years in child porn case

WATE 6 On Your Side Staff - KNOXVILLE (WATE) - A Knox County 19-year-old has been sentenced to 10 years after he pleaded guilty in a child porn case that began when he was only 17.

Joseph Adam Morton, 19, pleaded guilty on Friday to eight counts of aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor and was sentenced to a 10 year sentence with one year served as split confinement. Once released, he must register as a violent sex offender and will remain on lifetime supervision.

The Knoxville Police Department says the case began in May 2015 when their Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force learned from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that someone was distributing child pornography using an America Online email account. A further investigation revealed the suspect lived in West Knoxville.

On July 7, 2015, ICAC investigators and Knox County deputies searched the home and determined Morton, then 17, was the suspect in the case. An examination of his devices revealed he had 396 images and 25 video files of child pornography. The files showed pre-pubesecent children and infants involved in sexual acts.

Morton was arrested on August 7, 2015 and taken to the Richard L. Bean Juvenile Center. The case was transferred to adult court due to the nature of the crimes and a grand jury returned a true bill in the case in December 2016.


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