Maryville, Missouri man gets 5 years probation for possession of child porn

Maryville man gets 5 years probation for possession of child porn

(St. Joseph News Press) – A frustrated judge sentenced a former Northwest Missouri State University student to 30 years in prison with a suspended sentence and a five-year, highly supervised probation.

Circuit Judge Roger Prokes sentenced Garrett Warfield to five years in prison on the first charge of possession of child pornography, 10 years in prison for the second felony of possession of child pornography to be consecutively served to the first charge and 15 years in prison for the third charge of possession of child pornography to be consecutively served to the second charge.

“I read the charges and what is depicted is repulsive,” Prokes told those in court Monday as he proceeded to talk about the case.

Prokes said the case involves a student looking at child pornography pictures.

“I struggle with the difference between looking and doing,” the judge said.

There should be a special hell for the people making these videos, he said.

Speaking to Warfield’s parents, who were in the courtroom, Prokes said, “Take not one iota of blame for this, you are standing by your son. Don’t beat yourselves up.”

The judge said he admired the parents for participating in the supervised probation and allowing their son to live at home.

The home in Independence, Missouri, is located more than a 1,000 feet from any school, playground or park where children might be playing, according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

Prokes also addressed Missouri legislators, none of whom were present, chastising them for giving convicted defendants a day of credit for each good day while on probation, he urged the legislature to re-examine this issue.

The credit means Warfield only could be in court ordered probation for 2.5 years.

Defense attorney David Bell brought in Laura Mars, founder of Key Point Counseling Services, and an individual who has worked with sexual offenders for 25 years.

Mars tested Warfield and both she and Bell painted a picture of a depressed young man who hid his gay sexuality by internalizing his emotion and looking on the Internet. When confronted with his actions, he accepted responsibility and could be helped to deal with the reality of being gay without offending again.

“He’s not a fixated pedophile,” Mars said.

For Nodaway County Prosecutor Bob Rice the sentencing issue was more straightforward — he wanted a 15-year prison sentence. He said he believed treatment wasn’t a valid option.

“This wasn’t accidental, the images were saved on a thumb drive,” Rice said. “Put him in a place where he can’t hurt kids.”

Prokes said in closing it will be harder on Warfield to be in society doing the right thing than sitting in prison.

Warfield must wear a GPS monitor and abide by a host of court-ordered conditions, including a rigid counseling program with Key Point Counseling.

“I’m taking a risk nothing’s going to happen,” the judge said.

But if there are probation violations, Warfield can expect to spend the 30 years in prison, Prokes said. And the judge said if that happened, he wouldn’t give it a second thought after he’d sent Warfield to prison. Warfield pleaded guilty to the charges in February.