{{featured_button_text}}
Scott A. Gentry

Scott A. Gentry

ARGENTA — The case of the former Argenta banker who police say was caught with images of child pornography on his cellphone is headed for a June 18 federal court trial in Urbana.

Scott A. Gentry, 57, had been arraigned April 12 on three charges of the receipt of child pornography and two counts of possession of child pornography, according to a statement from John C. Milhiser, U.S. Attorney  for the Central District of Illinois.

Gentry has pleaded not guilty to all counts. If he is convicted, each charge carries a maximum prison sentence of 20 years and fines up to $250,000, Milhiser said.

Gentry, indicted by federal grand jury April 2, was ordered to remain in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service by U.S. Magistrate Judge Eric I. Long when he appeared for his arraignment in Urbana.

Gentry had been first arrested Jan. 24 after a co-worker at Gerber State Bank in Argenta saw a pornographic image on his phone. A sworn affidavit from the Macon County Sheriff’s Office said Gentry first denied any knowledge of having porn but later confessed to accessing images via the Internet. Some of the images, police said, showed children under the age of 4 in sexual poses, and police said his phone was loaded with more than 3,000 images.

Macon County State’s Attorney Jay Scott said he had handed over the case for federal prosecution because federal penalties are more severe. He said he frequently compares notes with federal prosecutors in more serious cases dealing with issues like child pornography, guns and illegal drugs.

“We just have an understanding that ... whoever can get the better sentence takes the case,” Scott said. “Sometimes it’s us, and a lot of times it’s them.”

Assistant U.S. Attorney Elly M. Peirson is now prosecuting the case against Gentry, who lives in New Berlin, and Peirson is working in coordination with Scott and also the Sangamon County State Attorney’s Office.

The Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office and the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force of the Illinois Attorney General’s Office are assisting with the case as well.

Sharon Paul, a spokeswoman for the U.S., Attorney’s Office, said the prosecution against Gentry is now part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide effort to to “combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation” and first launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.


Subscribe to Daily Headlines

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Contact Tony Reid at (217) 421-7977. Follow him on Twitter: @TonyJReid

0
0
0
0
0

Macon County Courts Reporter

Macon County courts reporter for the Herald & Review.

Load comments