Former Mitchell College student sentenced to 13 years for Internet sex with minors

September 24, 2018

Former Mitchell College student Travis W. McCoy was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court to 13 years in prison followed by a lifetime of supervised release for enticing minors to engage in sexual activity over the Internet while living in New London.

McCoy, 24, of Houston, Texas had pleaded guilty in June to one count of enticement of a minor to engage in sexual activity, a crime that carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison.

According to court documents and the office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut, McCoy committed the crimes while attending Mitchell College and living in an apartment at 206 Nautilus Drive between approximately August 2015 and March 2017.

In a sentencing memorandum submitted to U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea, Assistant U.S. Attorney Nancy V. Gifford urged the juge to impose a sentence that reflected “the seriousness of McCoy’s conduct, promotes respect for the law and provide a message of deterrence to all.” The memo cites McCoy’s pattern of “persistent and progressively troubling behavior in trying to gain access to minors,” including children he met at a doctor’s office and while working as a camp counselor.

In a reply to the government memorandum, defense attorneys Jeremiah Donovan and Todd Bussert described McCoy as an intellectually disabled, cognitively impaired, emotionally stunted, young man on the autism spectrum.”  They wrote that the mandatory minimum sentence, followed by a lengthy period of supervised release, was appropriate.

According to the government, McCoy used Internet-based video chatting services, including Kik and Google Hangouts, and Internet-based gaming systems, such as Xbox Live, to entice four minor males between the ages of 9 and 14 to engage in sexually explicit conduct over video-chatting services, such as Skype.

McCoy took screen shots of the minors engaged in sexual activity, or requested and received from the minors digital images and videos in which the minors are depicted engaging in sexual activity. He also sent sexually explicit images and videos of himself to the minor victims, according to the government. He initially had met one of the victims while working as a counselor at a summer camp in Texas.

The investigation also revealed that McCoy maintained three Dropbox accounts and gave the password to one of the accounts to a person living in Los Angeles as a way to share and receive child pornography. The Dropbox accounts contained 120 images and 158 videos of child pornography. There is no evidence that McCoy distributed any of the images or videos he received from the four minor victims he enticed.

He was arrested in Texas on June 28, 2017. In August 2017, he was released on bond to a residential treatment program in Pennsylvania. He returned to the District of Connecticut in January 2018 and has been housed at the Donald W. Wyatt Detention Center in Rhode Island while his case was pending.

The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations, the New London Police Department and the Houston Police Department.

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