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Hall County School Bus Driver Pleads Guilty to Distribution and Receipt of Child Pornography

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Hall County School Bus Driver Pleads Guilty to Distribution and Receipt of Child Pornography

U.S. Attorney’s Office, Northern District of Georgia
June 18, 2010

GAINESVILLE, GA—JOHN COOPER SPINKS, 41, of Oakwood, Georgia, a bus driver for the Hall County (Georgia) school system, pleaded guilty this morning in federal court in Gainesville to the distribution, receipt, and possession of child pornography.

United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates said, “As a school bus driver, this defendant assumed a position of trust with respect to the parents and children of Hall County. He betrayed that trust by distributing sexually exploitative images of children using his home computer. Thanks to the work of undercover FBI agents, the defendant has now pleaded guilty to the charges and faces serious consequences for his conduct.”

According to United States Attorney Yates and information presented during today’s guilty plea hearing: SPINKS distributed images of child pornography over the Internet to an undercover law enforcement officer who he encountered in a chat room named “#baby&toddlerlove.” In January 2010, SPINKS was again found in a chat room known for trading images of child pornography. On March 25, 2010, federal agents executed a search warrant at SPINKS’ home and seized a laptop computer and several other pieces of electronic media. SPINKS admitted to agents that he had searched for, downloaded, and viewed images of child pornography and that he had distributed child pornographic images over the Internet. On his computer, the FBI found numerous images of child pornography.

SPINKS faces a maximum sentence of up to 40 years in prison and a maximum fine of up to $500,000. No sentencing date has yet been set by the court. In determining the actual sentence, the court will consider the United States Sentencing Guidelines, which are not binding but provide appropriate sentencing ranges for most offenders.

This case is being investigated by special agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Assistant United States Attorneys Jill E. Steinberg and Brent Alan Gray are prosecuting the case.

For further information please contact Sally Quillian Yates, United States Attorney, or Charysse L. Alexander, Executive Assistant United States Attorney, through Patrick Crosby, Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Attorney's Office, at (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the HomePage for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Georgia is www.usdoj.gov/usao/gan.

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