GREENSBORO, N.C. – A Mount Airy man who sent a child pornography video to an individual he believed to be a 13-year-old girl was sentenced to 20 years in prison on Tuesday, according to a United States Department of Justice news release.
Walter Clifton Wood, 44, pleaded guilty on May 12, 2020, to transportation of child pornography.
He was sentenced on Tuesday by United States District Judge Catherine C. Eagles to 240 months of imprisonment followed by 15 years of supervised release.
Beginning in May 2018, Wood chatted online with an person claiming to be a 13- year-old girl who was actually an undercover detective with the Alamance County Sheriff’s Office.
Wood repeatedly directed the conversation to topics of a sexual nature and encouraged the purported 13-year-old to engage in sex acts. Twice during the communication, once in May and again in July 2018, Wood sent a video depicting an adult engaging in a sex act with a twelve-year-old girl.
Wood was arrested on July 27, 2018, in Surry County and has been in custody since.
When investigators with Homeland Security Investigations reviewed Wood’s phones, they discovered over 75 child pornography images and videos.
They also learned that Wood had engaged in an extended and sexually inappropriate online relationship with an actual minor from approximately May 2014 to June 2015.
This case was investigated by the ACSO with support from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Surry County Sheriff’s Office. All are members of the North Carolina Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.
The referenced ACSO undercover operation resulted in eighteen arrests and, to date, thirteen convictions in state and federal courts.
Former ACSO ICAC investigator Zachary M. Neefe developed and executed the operation.
During its course, he was assisted by HSI Special Agent Cory E. Brant, Special Agent Jessie G. Foster and Computer Forensic Analyst Mark Vincenc.