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Carlton man convicted for federal child sex crimes, distributed materials even while awaiting trial

By Joe Johnson

A Carlton man was convicted by a federal jury Wednesday evening of distributing and possessing child sexual abuse material days after Georgia Bureau of Investigation agents discovered evidence that he was continuing to distribute such material on a social media app and had cut off his ankle monitor to escape custody.

Christopher Snow, 35, was convicted on one count each of distribution of child sexual abuse material and possession of child sexual abuse material following a two-day trial before U.S. District Judge Tilman E. Self, III. Snow faces a mandatory minimum of five years up to a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count, for a maximum of 40 years in prison. In addition, he is facing up to a lifetime of supervised release and will have to register as a sex offender upon release from federal prison. Snow will remain in federal custody awaiting sentencing on Oct. 3 in Athens.

"By cutting his ankle monitor prior to trial, Snow attempted to evade justice for actively distributing and possessing child sexual abuse material involving young children; he's lost his freedom and will no longer be able to hurt innocent and vulnerable kids in this way," said U.S. Attorney Peter D. Leary. "It often takes many different groups to stop a child predator, as demonstrated in this case. I am thankful for the excellent collaboration at every level to protect children."

"This conviction serves as a strong reminder of our commitment to protecting children from the atrocities of child sexual abuse. The GBI remains resolute in its pursuit of justice and will not tolerate those who exploit the innocence of our most vulnerable population," said GBI Director Mike Register.

"Snow not only distributed the disturbing material for years but didn't stop even after he was under arrest and facing trial," said Keri Farley, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. "We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to ensure that people like this receive their full measure of justice."

According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, GBI received a Cybertip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) in Aug. 2018 that a Facebook user distributed suspected CSAM via Facebook Messenger. As a part of their investigation, GBI was able to determine that the user of that Facebook account resided in Carlton, Madison County, Georgia. A search warrant was executed at Snow's residence in Carlton; law enforcement seized several electronic devices that Snow kept in a padlocked room. A digital forensic examiner later determined that those electronic devices, including the phone that was found on Snow the day of the search warrant, contained at least 45 images and 17 videos of CSAM. The material contained images of children under the age of 12.

As a condition of Snow's pretrial release, he was required to wear an ankle monitor and not have access to electronic devices. On June 1, 2023, GBI received an additional Cybertip indicating that Snow may have been continuing to distribute CSAM on the Kik messenger app in 2022, while awaiting trial. Snow was scheduled for a federal hearing on June 2 prior to his trial but cut off his ankle monitor on June 1. A bench warrant was issued for his arrest, and he was taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals on June 5.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse, launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by the U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the DOJ's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit<>.

The case was investigated by the GBI, with assistance from the FBI, the U.S. Marshals Service and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

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