NASHVILLE, Tenn. – March 2, 2021 – A criminal complaint was unsealed this morning charging a Springfield, Tennessee man with attempted enticement of a minor; attempted production of visual depictions of minors engaging in sexual activity; and transfer of obscene matter to a minor, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Mary Jane Stewart for the Middle District of Tennessee.
Malcolm Wilkerson, 50, was arrested at his home this morning by FBI agents and will make an initial appearance before a U.S. Magistrate Judge later today.
According to the criminal complaint, beginning in mid-December 2020, the FBI was conducting a covert online investigation on an online dating app. This app is available for free and requires users to be at least 18 years old. It is widely known that many users under the age of 18 frequently use the app by misrepresenting their ages. On December 16, 2020 a user of the app with the profile of “Malcom from Springfield, Tennessee,” contacted the FBI covert agent, whose profile suggested that she was an 18-year-old female, and began a conversation suggesting sexual activity. The online conversation quickly turned to age and the FBI covert agent informed “Malcolm” that she was under the age of 15. “Malcolm” and the FBI covert agent then continued their conversation over text messaging where the agent informed him that she was 13 years old.
These text message conversations continued until mid-February and included numerous requests by “Malcolm” for the agent to send nude photographs. On several occasions, “Malcolm” sent the agent obscene and sexually suggestive photos and also sent her nude photographs of a person believed to be Malcolm Wilkerson. “Malcolm” continued to send the agent requests for nude photos and made many suggestions and plans to meet for sexual activity.
Through further investigation, the FBI was able to identify “Malcolm” as Malcolm Wilkerson and obtained an arrest warrant on February 26, 2021.
If convicted, Wilkerson faces a minimum of 10 years and up to life in prison.
This case is being investigated by the FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Josh Kurtzman is prosecuting the case.
A criminal complaint is merely an accusation. The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
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