Fort Bend County District
Michael Joseph Hall plead guilty to the
felony charges of Promotion of Child Pornography and possession of the same on
November 20, 2017. The 27 year-old Sugar
Land man then accepted 7 years in prison in an agreement with prosecutors. Hall is required to register as a sex
offender for the rest of his life.
to Assistant District Attorney Michael Hartman, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
(NCMEC) received a “Cyber-tip” from Skype and “Chatstep” that an individual was
sharing known child pornography images with what appeared to be a minor in
Sugar Land Police Sgt. Matt Levan, affiliated
with The Houston Metro - Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce (ICAC)
investigated the cyber-tip. Levan executed
a search warrant in March 2017 and found the defendant in possession of pornographic
images of children. Hall subsequently
confessed to the promotion (distribution) of child pornography.
“Studies have shown that a high
percentage of offenders that collect and distribute child pornography also
sexually abuse children,” said Hartman, “which is why it’s so important to
investigate beyond the initial pornography we discover.” Hartman continued, “This case illustrates the
importance of pro-active investigations in identifying perpetrators who would
otherwise not be held accountable for their crimes. And without consequences, these perpetrators
will not stop.”
plead guilty in the 400th District Court before Presiding Judge
Maggie Jaramillo. Promotion of Child
Pornography in this case is a second-degree felony, punishable by 2-20 years in
prison and a fine up to $10,000.
Possession of Child Pornography is a third-degree felony punishable by
2-10 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000.
Hall was eligible to receive probation and had no prior felony
Assistant District Attorney Michael L.
Hartman and Katie Peterson prosecuted the case.
Attorneys Ken and Judy Mingledorff represented the defendant.