CHICAGO – Attorney General Kwame Raoul today announced that a Staunton man was charged with disseminating child pornography. The case is part of Raoul’s ongoing work to collaborate with federal law enforcement agencies and local law enforcement officials throughout Illinois to apprehend offenders who download and trade child pornography online.
Alex L. Ivey, 32, of Staunton, Illinois, was charged in Macoupin County Circuit Court with 10 counts of dissemination of child pornography, each a Class X felony punishable by six to 30 years in prison, and five counts of possession of child pornography, each a Class 2 felony punishable by three to seven years in prison. Ivey’s bond is set at $400,000, and his next court date is scheduled for July 12.
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“Online child exploitation is not a victimless crime, and individuals who are engaged in the distribution of child pornography need to be held accountable,” Raoul said. “I appreciate the assistance of the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Office and the Staunton Police Department through the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and I am committed to working with law enforcement at all levels to track down individuals who possess and distribute these horrific images.”
Raoul’s investigators, with the assistance of the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Office and the Staunton Police Department, conducted a search of Ivey’s residence Thursday, June 23, on East Leonard Street in Staunton, and arrested Ivey after discovering evidence of child pornography.
The case will be jointly prosecuted by Raoul’s office and Macoupin County State’s Attorney Jordan Garrison.
“Online predators take advantage of our society’s most vulnerable and cause lifetimes of pain for survivors,” Macoupin County State’s Attorney Jordan Garrison said. “I am proud to team with the Illinois Attorney General Raoul’s office in prosecuting this case and appreciate the work and dedication of both the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Office and the Staunton Police Department.”
“We are fortunate to have this great working relationship with the Illinois Attorney General‘s office,” Macoupin County Sheriff Shawn Kahl said. “Great teamwork is essential to help us take criminals off the streets.”
“The Staunton Police Department would like to commend and thank the Illinois Attorney General’s Office Investigators for their work in the recent child pornography case involving Alex Ivey,” Staunton Police Chief Jeff Doerr said. “The Illinois Attorney General’s Office Investigators, assisted by the Macoupin County Sheriff’s Department and the Staunton Police Department, were able to serve a search warrant and obtain evidence to arrest Alex Ivey on numerous charges of child pornography, making our community a safer place for our children.”
The public is reminded that the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
The arrest is part of Attorney General Raoul’s work to investigate and prosecute child pornographers in Illinois. Raoul’s office, with a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice, runs the Illinois Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force that investigates child exploitation crimes and trains law enforcement agencies. The task force receives CyberTips, or online reports of child pornography, from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Over the last several years, CyberTipline reports have steadily increased; in fact, reports to the ICAC during 2021 increased by 42% over 2020.
In response to increasing reports of online child exploitation, Raoul announced a series of ICAC webinars aimed at giving parents, guardians and educators tools to help children and teens foster healthy online interactions. The free webinars teach parents and guardians about the social media apps children and teens may be using, how to identify signs that a child may have been a victim of online child solicitation, and more. To find out how to register for upcoming summer webinars or to view recorded webinars visit www.OnlineSafeOnlineSmart.com or email Karilyn.Orr@ilag.gov to be added to our contact list.
Illinois’ ICAC Task Force is one of 61 ICAC Task Forces throughout the country and is comprised of a network of more than 285 local, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies, and the task force covers 101 of Illinois’ 102 counties. Since 2019, the Attorney General's ICAC Task Force has received more than 19,500 CyberTips and been involved in more than 203 arrests of sexual predators. Since 2006, the Attorney General’s ICAC Task Force has been involved in more than 1,780 arrests of sexual predators. The task force also has provided internet safety training and education to more than 953,500 parents, teachers and students and more than 23,100 law enforcement professionals.
Raoul reminds the public that online child sexual exploitation can be reported at www.cybertipline.com and child abuse can be reported at dcfsonlinereporting.dcfs.illinois.gov. In addition, local child advocacy centers can be found here: childrensadvocacycentersofillinois.org.
Assistant Attorney General Shantikumar Kulkarni is handling the case for Raoul’s High Tech Crimes Bureau.