Suspect pleads guilty to child exploitation, faces 40 years

Published 12:30 am Sunday, July 2, 2017

A Gulfport man will serve 10 years in prison and pay a $50,000 fine after pleading guilty Friday in Warren County Circuit Court to one count of child exploitation.

Circuit Judge M. James Chaney sentenced Russell Haley, 67, to 40 years in prison with 10 to serve and suspended the remaining 30 years upon successful completion of five years’ post-release supervision.

Besides time in jail, Haley was also ordered to pay $1,000 to the Children’s Trust Fund and $1,000 to the Mississippi Crime Victim Compensation Fund. He must also register as a sex offender upon his release from prison and is banned from the going to any casino, which was where he was located when downloading the child pornography.

Haley would check into casino hotels in Mississippi and Louisiana under assumed identities and use the hotels’ free Wi-Fi connections to download hundreds of images of child pornography.

He was arrested Aug. 6, 2015, at DiamondJacks Casino, now WaterView Casino, on Washington Street and charged with two counts of possession of child pornography, according to Warren County Jail records.

The arrest was the result of an investigation by the Attorney General’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, Mississippi Gaming Commissions, Louisiana State Police Special Victims Unit, Louisiana State Police Gaming Detectives and the Warren County Sheriff’s Office. 

“This man thought he could hide, but our investigators and those with the assisting agencies work every day to be sure child predators are not safe to commit these crimes in our state,” said Attorney General Jim Hood. “I am proud of the partnership our ICAC Task Force has with agencies across the state, and their success is clear when working together on cases like this.”

In other court cases:

• Chad Everett James, 38, was sentenced to four years in the Mississippi Department of Corrections’ Recidivism Reduction Program with three years’ post-release supervision after his suspended sentence was revoked for probation violation.

James was initially sentenced on June 30 after pleading guilty to possession of precursors for methamphetamine.

• Cory Neil Fulgham, 24, was placed in the Mississippi Department of Corrections long-term alcohol and drug treatment program followed by five years’ post-release supervision and ordered to pay the Warren County Circuit Clerk $5,544.50 after his post-release supervision from an earlier case was revoked for violating the terms of the post-release supervision.

About Tim Reeves

Tim Reeves, and his wife Stephanie, are the parents of three children, Sarah Cameron, Clayton and Fin, who all attend school in the Vicksburg Warren School District. The family are members of First Baptist Church Vicksburg. Tim is involved in a number of civic and volunteer organizations including the United Way of West Central Mississippi and serves on the City of Vicksburg's Riverfront Redevelopment Committee.

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