(Memphis) Cell phones with cameras make it easy to send and receive pictures.
But some adults are using that technology to harm children.
31-year-old John Vincent LaBuda of Bartlett was sentenced this week to 30 years in prison for videotaping himself having sex with a child under the age of 10.
“He used a Blackberry on a minor and it was just one click with the button,” U.S. Attorney, Edward Stanton, said.
Then, on Friday, Shannon and Daryl Mayness were sentenced in federal court to 10 years.
They gave cell phones to several girls between 13-15 in Chester County, Tennessee. They pressured the girls to send sexually explicit photos to themselves.
They even raped one of the girls.
“Individuals who commit this reprehensible conduct should be sent a message by these long and stiff sentences that it won’t be tolerated,” Stanton said. “It will remain a priority for the Department of Justice.”
With new technology there is an uptick in these cases. The Child’s Advocacy Center of Memphis says parents need to be more alert.
“Children need to be helped by us adults to be safe,” CAC Executive Director Nancy Williams said.
She offers this advice to parents.
“Checking your child’s phone. See who have they been texting and be curious communicate. Then do it again,” she said.
The CAC has a program called Stewards of Children that parents can take to learn about how to prevent child abuse. For more information call 901.525.2377.