This article was corrected to show that Pollard was sentenced to 19-and-a-half years in prison. The Record-Herald previously reported he was sentenced to nine-and-a-half years. The Record-Herald regrets the error.
A Bloomingburg man who photo-shopped himself into nudity-oriented pictures of minors that he found on the internet was sentenced to prison for 19-and-a-half years.
Larry M. Pollard, 50, was convicted on 26 of 102 felony charges handed down by a Fayette County grand jury in a 28-page indictment.
Pollard plead guilty to 26 counts of pandering obscenity involving a minor, each a felony of the third degree, Feb. 14 in the Fayette County Court of Common Pleas.
Prior to being sentenced by Judge Steven Beathard, Pollard and his attorney, Thomas Arrington, provided statements to the court for mitigation.
Pollard faced a maximum sentence of 78 years in prison on the 26 charges.
Arrington asked the court for a combination of prison and treatment in fashioning the sentence.
Pollard had previously been convicted on charges of gross sexual imposition and pandering in sexually-oriented material in 2002.
“For a period of time [Pollard] was able to control his behaviors in this addiction,” said Arrington during the Feb. 14 hearing. “This is an addiction that Mr. Pollard has been dealing with. Unfortunately, when circumstances became difficult in his life as is often the case with someone addicted, he did relapse and went back to what was a comfortable scenario for him. Unfortunately that put him back at odds with the law and put him in possession of items he was not supposed to be in possession of.”
Arrington asked the court not to impose a “life sentence” of 30 years or more on the charges and asked that Pollard be given a shorter prison term with some form of a treatment program to rehabilitate him of his addiction.
Next, it was Pollard’s turn to speak.
“Mr. Pollard, this is your opportunity, by law, to make any statements in your defense or to mitigate your conduct,” Beathard said to Pollard.
Pollard gave the court the following statement:
“Yes, your honor. I understand that my actions that I’ve done has brought a lot of shame for my name through the years that I’ve tried to build back up and I have built up at one time. I’ve also destroyed most of it all over again with this addiction. I’ve let down my Lord, my family, my wife, I have dealt and spoken with him before I’ve gave my life to the Lord once, and I’ve served the church and me and my wife went to church for the longest time. And I’m not justifying my actions for anything because I have relapsed within the last year or so that I’ve allowed my mind to play with those sample subjects and I apologize to the courts and everything for such a topic to be brought into here, and to have ears and eyes to see and witness things of unlawful conduct. I understand it is wrong and for that I’m deeply sorry.”
Judge Beathard imposed a sentence of nine months in prison on each of the 26 counts, for the total of 19-and-a-half years.
According to the Fayette County Prosecutor’s Office, someone had borrowed Pollard’s laptop computer to listen to music. Upon turning on the computer, a photo showed up and the person called the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office and reported it.
The Fayette County Sheriff’s Office received assistance from the federal database of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) in identifying the images and the electronics, and additional pieces of evidence were submitted to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s crime lab for further analysis.
The prosecutor’s office said the pictures recovered involved minors that Pollard had found online, with none of the minors specific to Fayette County.
Pollard then took photographs of himself, presumably at his 23 Wayne St. address, and photo-shopped himself into the pictures of the minors that he had obtained.
In addition to the prison term he is serving, Beathard ordered Pollard to begin a new registration as a Tier II sex offender beginning Feb 14.
Beathard said that Pollard will have to register for 25 years, with an in-person registration every six months.
The remaining charges, 27-102, were dismissed by the state in the plea negotiation.
The NCMEC responded to 10,093 reports involving possible child sex trafficking in 2017. According to a 2017 Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force Report, Ohio had the fourth highest number of human trafficking cases reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline in 2015. To report a crime that involves sexually-oriented material involving children or human trafficking, call 911, contact the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office, 740-335-6170, the National Human Trafficking Hotline, 1-888-3737-888, text HELP to BeFree (233733), or text HOPE to the Ohio 24/7 crisis line at 741741.