From the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Baltimore:
On January 25, 2018, United States District Judge James K. Bredar sentenced Brian Shumate, age 50, of Edgewood, Maryland to 31 years in prison, followed by a lifetime of supervised release for the sexual exploitation of children.
The sentence was announced by Acting United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Stephen M. Schenning and Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office.
According to court documents, between 2013 and 2015, Shumate used online sites to find and communicate with minors as young as 13. Shumate initiated sexually explicit communication with the female victims and sent images of his genitals to them. He then pressured the victims to take photographs of themselves engaging in sexually explicit conduct. Shumate would misrepresent himself online and would initially pretend to be a teenage boy. In some instances, after corresponding with his victims for a time, Shumate would disclose his real age and threaten the victims and their families, unless the victims continued to send him content.
After being convicted for traveling to Pennsylvania in 2004 to have sex with a 12-year-old female who he asked to call him “daddy,” Shumate served a seven-year prison sentence. Upon his release in 2012, he violated his parole on three separate occasions, was convicted for failing to register as a sex offender, and was subsequently arrested on May 22, 2014.
In June 2014, while in the Harford County Detention Center, Shumate called an acquaintance who informed him that the FBI was asking about his phone and social network accounts, including email and Facebook. The acquaintance also told Shumate that the FBI wanted access to Shumate’s phone and tablet. Shumate instructed the acquaintance to delete specific numbers and images from the phone (the numbers and images were all females), and to wipe the phone of all content.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.justice.gov/psc and click on the “resources” tab on the left of the page.
Acting United States Attorney Stephen M. Schenning praised the FBI for their work in the investigation. Mr. Schenning thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul E. Budlow who prosecuted the case.