Former Nicholas County Deputy Sheriff pleads guilty to child pornography crime

NICHOLAS COUNTY, WV (WVNS) — A former Nicholas County Deputy Sheriff pleaded guilty to a child pornography crime.

38-year-old Jarrod Steven Bennett, of Mt. Nebo, pleaded guilty to production of child pornography. Bennett was a former Deputy Sheriff in Nicholas County.

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This was a terrible crime, and that it was committed by someone we considered a brother-in-arms makes it so much worse. We will never turn a blind eye to anyone sworn to uphold the law in this great State or Country.

William F. Nunley | Nicholas County Sheriff

According to court documents, around March 2, 2023, Bennett, who was a deputy with the Nicholas County Sheriff’s Office, recorded two videos on his cell phone of a female minor asleep on a couch. He revealed that he knew the girl was under 12 years old when the videos were taken.

The videos show the minor face down on the couch with a blanket over her torso and her bare legs uncovered. One video shows Bennet recording the girl while he zoomed in the camera on her buttocks. He further admitted to getting closer to the minor while recording the second video and recorded his exposed penis and him masturbating near the girl while she slept.

Bennett revealed that he saved the videos to his Snapchat account, the process of which put them on the internet. Bennett was also fired from his job as a deputy.

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Bennett’s sentencing is scheduled for June 26, 2024, and he faces 15 to 30 years in prison, 5 years to life on parole, a $250,000 fine, and he will need to register as a sex offender.

The defendant exploited a minor child under his care and betrayed her and the community he swore to serve and protect with his deplorable actions.

Will Thompson | United Stated Attorney

The announcement was made by United States Attorney Will Thompson, who praised the West Virginia State Police-Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC), the Beckley Police Department, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security-Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) for their work on the investigation.

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