Former mayor pro tem admits to child pornography charges
HOUSTON, TX -- A 68-year-old resident of Seabrook has entered a guilty plea to receipt and possession of child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.
Ocal John Miller is a former law enforcement officer, having served as chief of police in Martinsville, West Virginia; and city councilman and mayor pro tem for Seabrook.
Miller came to the attention of law enforcement in June 2016 when the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) sent multiple cybertips to the Houston Metro Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
The investigation revealed Miller was using Skype to receive and distribute child pornography images to others via the internet. Miller also used Dropbox and Kik Messenger to obtain and store child pornography. Based on information gathered during the investigation, authorities executed a federal search warrant for Miller’s home in Seabrook March 30, 2017. At that time, they seized a computer, iPhone and several digital storage devices. Forensic examination resulted in the discovery of more than 1,300 images and 1,000 videos containing child pornography.
U.S. District Judge Alfred Bennett accepted the plea today and set sentencing for Dec. 12. At that time, Miller faces a minimum of five and up to 20 years for receipt as well as a maximum of 10 years for possessing it. Miller will also have to register as a sex offender and abide by special conditions limiting his use of the internet and interactions with persons under the age of 18. He also faces up to a $250,000 fine.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations and police departments in Webster and Pearland conducted the investigation as part of the Houston Metro Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Sherri L. Zack is prosecuting the case, which was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood(PSC), a nationwide initiative the Department of Justice (DOJ) launched in May 2006 to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section leads PSC, which marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children and identifies and rescues victims. For more information about PSC, please visit DOJ’s PSC page. For more information about internet safety education, please visit the resources tab on that page.