A former U.S. Airman and a repeat child sex offender both admitted to possessing child sexual abuse material (CSAM) involving minor victims in separate Project Safe Childhood cases in the Middle District of Georgia this week.
Kenneth Queen, 35, of Forsyth, Georgia, and formerly of Dayton, Tennessee, pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of child sexual abuse material and one count of failure to register as a sex offender today before U.S. District Judge Marc Treadwell. Queen faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for each count of possession of CSAM, a maximum sentence of ten years in prison for failing to register as a sex offender and a maximum lifetime of supervised release. Queen will also have to register as a sex offender for life upon his release from prison. Sentencing for Queen is scheduled for July 13, 2023.
Justin Wayne Pallett, 29, of Warner Robins, Georgia, was sentenced to serve 210 months in prison to be followed by a lifetime on supervised release by U.S. District Judge Tilman E. “Tripp” Self III on April 4, after he previously pleaded guilty to possession of child sexual abuse material. Pallett will have to register as a sex offender for life upon his release from federal prison. There is no parole for federal convictions.
“Our office will work tirelessly to protect children from child predators,” said U.S. Attorney Peter D. Leary. “Through Project Safe Childhood, our office has a team of prosecutors working with law enforcement from every level dedicated to protecting our most vulnerable citizens from child victimization.”
According to public records, Queen was convicted of sexual battery against a child under 16 and child molestation in Madison County, Georgia, Superior Court on Oct. 27, 2008. Queen was required to register as a sex offender for life. After his conviction, Queen relocated to Tennessee, where he registered as a sex offender. Queen was residing in Monroe County, Georgia, in the summer of 2020 when it was reported to authorities that he was unlawfully tattooing children. Queen was found in possession of graphic child sexual abuse material he captured involving a young child. Queen was required to be registered as a sex offender at the time, but had not registered himself in Monroe County as the law required him to do. For the protection of the minor victim, a portion of Queen’s plea agreement will remain sealed.
According to Pallett’s plea agreement, the mother of a 13-year-old girl reported to law enforcement in November 2020 that her daughter had exchanged sexually explicit Snapchat and Facebook messages and images with a 26-year-old male. The male was later identified as Pallett, who was an active duty service member assigned to Robins Air Force Base. A search warrant executed on Pallett’s Snapchat account revealed he was engaged in similar sexually explicit communication with numerous underage girls. Agents found 178 images and six videos of child sexual abuse material on Pallett’s electronic devices—a cell phone, tablet, laptop and PC—including 14 images found within the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) database.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse, launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the DOJ’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
The Queen case was investigated by the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, FBI and the U.S. Marshals Service. Assistant U.S. Attorney Joy Odom is prosecuting the case.
The Pallett case was investigated by the U.S. Air Force, Office of Special Investigations. Deputy Criminal Chief Will Keyes prosecuted the Pallett case.