ABILENE, Texas — An Abilene man has been sentenced to 28 years in federal prison and 15 years of supervised police by a federal court.
On March 31, 2020, Abilene Police Department Cyber Crimes Division detectives began an investigation into the alleged uploading of child pornography through a tip received by the National Center for Exploited and Missing Children (NCMEC).
A subsequent investigation led to the arrest of Larry Don Sparks, 36, for sexual performance by a child and promoting child pornography, according to a press release from the APD.
On Wednesday, April 8, Abilene Police Cyber Crimes, along with the Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigation Division, executed a search-and-arrest warrant at a residence in the 1000 block of South Clack Street.
Sparks was arrested at the scene and charged with first-degree felony aggravated sexual assault/performance of a child; as well as second-degree felony promotion of child pornography.
He was accused of sexually abusing a child under the age of 14 and downloading and uploading images of child pornography over the internet. Electronic evidence was seized from the residence.
Sparks was transported to the Taylor County Jail.
In a recent federal hearing, Sparks was found guilty of production of child pornography (violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2251(a)) and was sentenced to 28 years imprisonment and 15 years supervised release.
The Abilene Police Department would like to remind citizens if they suspect any of the following to please report any local incidents to the APD. Any state or national incidents can be reported through the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) at report.cybertip.org; or the 24-hour hotline at 800-843-5678.
- Child pornography (possession, manufacturing and distribution)
- Online enticement of children for sexual acts
- Child sex trafficking
- Child sexual molestation
- Child sex tourism
- Misleading domain names
- Misleading digital images on the internet
- Unsolicited obscene material sent to a child
- For more tips on keeping children safe online, and other tools, go to missingkids.org.