Leonard C Boyle, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that JESSICA PICKERING, 28, formerly of Waterbury, was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Stefan R. Underhill in Bridgeport to 96 months of imprisonment, followed by five years of supervise release, for distributing child pornography through the Kik social media application.
According to court documents and statements made in court, in October 2020, Pickering joined a Kik group geared toward those with a sexual interest in children and then corresponded with an FBI Online Covert Employee (“OCE”) who was monitoring the group. Pickering stated that she had access to three minors, aged 7 and younger. On October 20, 2020, Pickering posted two live videos to the Kik group that depicted child pornography of a male toddler. Pickering later sent the OCE two additional videos that depicted child pornography of the same child. The next day, Pickering withdrew from the Kik group, stating that she “felt an immense amount of disgust for [her]self after what [she] did the other night.”
Pickering was arrested on a federal criminal complaint on October 27, 2020. She pleaded guilty to the offense on May 5, 2021.
Pickering, who is released on bond while residing with family in Queens, New York, is required to report to prison on March 16.
This matter was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation with the assistance of the Wolcott Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Angel M. Krull.
This prosecution is part of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Project Safe Childhood Initiative, which is aimed at protecting children from sexual abuse and exploitation. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.
To report cases of child exploitation, please visit www.cybertipline.com.