ST. LOUIS (KMOX) –¬†A man convicted of child pornography in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois has been setenced to 27 years behind bars

Stephen A. Turner,36, reportedly used the chat function of an online video game to befriend an 11-year-old girl, and he eventually convinced her to send him naked photos of herself.

The girl’s mother discovered the text messages and photos and called police.

The case is part of “Project Safe Childhood,” a nationwide initiative launched a decade ago by the U.S. ¬†Justice Department to combat the growing epidemic of online sexual abuse and exploitation of children.

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