Eldersburg teen sentenced to 9 months for child pornography charge

Eldersburg teen sentenced to 9 months for child pornography charge
David Esmond (/)

An Eldersburg man was sentenced to nine months, eight of which will be spent on home detention, after taking a plea deal to one count of possessing child pornography with the intent to promote or distribute.

David Esmond, 19, of the 1100 block of Balsam Court, pleaded not guilty with an agreement to the statement of facts, to one count of possession of child pornography with the intent to promote or distribute Tuesday morning before Carroll County Circuit Court Judge Fred Hecker.


As part of the plea, the state agreed to abandon two other child pornography related charges, Senior Assistant State's Attorney Amy Ocampo said during the hearing.

Hecker sentenced Esmond to five years, with all but nine months suspended. Esmond was sentenced to serve the first 30 days in the Carroll County Detention Center, while the remainder of his active sentence can be served on home detention. He will also be on three years supervised probation once he served his sentence.

It was a balance between the state's request that Esmond serve 18 months in the detention center and the defense's request that he serve his sentence on home detention.

A Maryland State Police investigation into a BitTorrent network found an image of child pornography linked to an IP address that was registered to Esmond's computer. A search and seizure warrant was served on Esmond's residence and multiple images of child pornography were found on his computer, according to the statement of facts read by Ocampo at Tuesday's hearing.

Ocampo told Hecker the case had one of the largest numbers of child pornography files in her experience.

Ocampo said it was Esmond's secret activity that brought him to court.

Both Esmond's father and brother told Hecker how Esmond was a virtuous person and how they were shocked by his actions.

"I don't think I've ever met someone who knows so clearly what is right and what is wrong," Esmond's brother said.

Esmond's attorney, Gary Desper, told Hecker that his client had lost his mother three years prior to his arrest, which led to depression and anxiety. Esmond's father told Hecker they had also lost their house in a fire when Esmond was younger.

Hecker said it was a "profound irony" that someone with a traumatic childhood would commit a crime that hurt children. In deciding his sentence, Hecker said he took into account the offense, the safety of the community and public, Esmond's family history, Esmond's personal history, treatment recommendations and steps Esmond has already taken.