Lucas Jordon Conerly Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Using Internet to Entice a Child for Illegal Sexual Purposes
|U.S. Attorney’s Office April 17, 2014|
GREENEVILLE, TN—On April 17, 2014, Lucas Jordan Conerly, 31, of Blountville, Tennessee, was sentenced by the Honorable J. Ronnie Greer, U.S. District Judge, to serve 10 years in prison. Conerly pleaded guilty in December 2013 to a federal indictment charging him with using a means of interstate commerce to entice a child for illegal sexual activity. Upon his release from prison, Conerly will be subject to a life term of supervised release with special conditions.
When the family of a 13-year-old child reported to local law enforcement that Conerly had solicited meetings with their child, the Knoxville Police Department Internet Crimes Against Children Unit (ICAC) and Federal Bureau of Investigation joined forces to assume the victim’s online identity and communicate with him. Conerly arranged to meet the victim at a business in Johnson City and promised the victim gifts if he met with him. In January 2013, Conerly was arrested when he appeared at the scheduled location for the purpose of engaging in illegal sexual activity. He maintained an online relationship with the victim for nearly four months and later admitted he selected the victim from the child’s social media photograph.
William C. Killian, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee, praised the cooperative efforts of the investigative agencies in this case. “Through outstanding investigative work, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Knoxville Police Department ICAC, and the Johnson City Police Department disrupted Conerly’s plan to prey on a child. Those who commit these acts deserve to spend many years in prison and be supervised for the rest of their lives to ensure other children are not harmed,” stated Killian.
The indictment and subsequent conviction of Conerly was the result of an investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Knoxville Police Department ICAC, and Johnson City Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Helen Smith represented the United States.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), 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 to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.