Gary Cossey Sentenced to 78-Month Term of Incarceration
|U.S. Attorney's Office December 03, 2009|
ALBANY, NY—Andrew T. Baxter, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of New York, and John F. Pikus, Special Agent In Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Albany Division, announced today that GARY COSSEY, of Cambridge, New York, was sentenced by United States District Judge Gary L. Sharpe in Federal Court in Albany on his guilty plea to Count 1 of an Indictment charging COSSEY with the possession of child pornography. COSSEY was sentenced to 78 months' imprisonment and ordered to serve a lifetime term of supervised release.
In the Plea Agreement that was executed on February 13, 2009, GARY COSSEY admitted the following facts:
In October 2005, law enforcement officials initiated a child pornography investigation after a Captain with the Easton/Greenwich Rescue Squad surrendered to the Greenwich police department a Dell Dimension computer belonging to the rescue squad that contained various images of suspect child pornography. At the time this Dell Dimension was surrendered to the police department, Gary Cossey was (and had been for several years) an employee of the Cambridge/Greenwich Rescue Squad and had been using the squad's Dell Dimension computer to view and download images of child pornography. On October 15, 2005, after being contacted by an investigator with the New York State Police, Gary Cossey voluntarily consented to a search of the Nex Link computer he owned and used at his home in Cambridge, New York. And on October 20, 2006, Gary Cossey voluntarily consented to a search of a Lexar thumbdrive that he owned.
A forensic examination of the Dell Dimension computer, the Nex Link computer, and the Lexar thumbdrive was subsequently conducted. As a result of this analysis, numerous images depicting minors between the ages of 3 and 14 years of age engaged in sexually explicit conduct, as those terms and phrases are defined in Title 18, United States Code, Section 2256(2), were recovered from both the Dell Dimension computer and the Nex Link computer. The images on both of the computers depict individuals under the age of 18 engaged in, among other things, vaginal intercourse, oral sex, masturbation, and the lascivious exhibition of the genitals and pubic area. The forensic examination of the Lexar Thumbdrive identified one or more images of an individual under the age of 18 engaged iin sexually explicit conduct, as those terms and phrases are defined in Title 18, United States Code, Section 2256(2). All of the images recovered from the Dell Dimension computer, the Nex Link computer, and the Lexar thumbdrive depict actual, as opposed to computer generated, images of minors engaged in the sexual conduct.
COSSEY knowingly and willfully possessed the images of sexually explicit conduct involving minors located on the still images on the Dell Dimension computer, the Nex Link computer, and the Lexar thumbdrive. In addition, he possessed the images knowing that they depict minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. COSSEY obtained the images from, among other places, one or more websites located outside the State of New York by downloading the images onto the two aforementioned computers and the thumbdrive. Moreover, the images of sexually explicit conduct involving minors, and the actual computers and hard drives used to obtain and download them as well as the Lexar thumbdrive used to transport the images, were transported in interstate and foreign commerce and were produced using materials that had been mailed, or shipped or transported in interstate and foreign commerce.
On October 20, 2006, law enforcement officials interviewed COSSEY. In a handwritten signed statement, COSSEY stated, among other things, (1) that he started viewing child pornography in 2001; (2) that he downloaded and viewed child pornography on the Dell Dimension computer at the Easton Greenwich Rescue Squad that was surrendered to the police in the fall of 2005; (3) that he downloaded and viewed child pornography on the Nex Link computer that he owned and kept at his house and that was surrendered to the police in October 2005; (4) that he copied the images of child pornography on the rescue squad's Dell Dimension computer onto a thumb drive and then transferred the child pornography from the thumb drive to his home computer.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys Offices, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Albany Field Office.