St. Joseph man sentenced to 23 years in prison for producing child pornography

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A St. Joseph, Mo., man who produced pornographic images of three child victims and shared them online was sentenced in federal court today for producing and possessing child pornography.

Tyler B. Wirth, 35, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Gary A. Fenner to 23 years in federal prison without parole. The court also sentenced Wirth to life on supervised release following incarceration and ordered him to pay $14,381 in victim restitution.

Wirth will be required to register as a sex offender upon his release from prison and will be subject to federal and state sex offender registration requirements, which may apply throughout his life.

On Jan. 17, 2023, Wirth pleaded guilty to one count of producing child pornography and one count of possessing child pornography. He admitted to producing pornographic images of three children, which he distributed to multiple users on the Kik application during his sexual conversations with them.

Wirth communicated extensively over the Kik application in July and August 2020 about his desire to sexually abuse children. He produced child pornography to distribute to other users within these Kik chats, taking pornographic photos of three child victims. He also discussed with numerous Kik users his desire to sexually abuse the child victims and repeatedly asked for guidance from other Kik users on how to go about it.

Wirth received hundreds of images and videos of child pornography from other Kik users and distributed numerous other images and videos from his possession, which included over a thousand images and videos of child pornography.

Wirth entered chat rooms on Kik, which provided a forum for users to discuss the sexual exploitation of minors, as well as trade and share images and videos of child pornography. He fully participated in these chat rooms and engaged in private communications with other individuals where he discussed his desires to sexually exploit children. He routinely asked for advice on how to go about sexually abusing minors.

Law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Wirth’s residence on Aug. 10, 2020. Officers seized Wirth’s electronic media and cell phone, which contained hundreds of other videos and images of child pornography.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kenneth Borgnino. It was investigated by the FBI.

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