-Press Release, U.S. Department of Justice
Robert J. Higdon, Jr., the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, announces that United States District Judge Louise W. Flanagan sentenced MARK BASS, 59, of Creedmoor, North Carolina to 326 months imprisonment, followed by a lifetime of supervised released. He was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $75,000.00.
On October 18, 2018, BASS was named in a one-count Indictment charging him with the Manufacture of Child Pornography. On January 28, 2019, BASS pled guilty to the charge. BASS is currently serving a term in state custody for other sex offenses against children.
In August 2017, the Granville County Sheriff’s Office (GCSO) in Oxford, North Carolina, and the Wake County Sheriff’s Office in Raleigh, North Carolina, received information related to the sexual abuse of an 18-year-old female (Victim 1) by MARK BASS. The sexual abuse began when Victim 1 was 7 or 8 years of age and continued until she was at least 17 years old. During the course of the investigation, agents also learned of a second victim, Victim 2, a 13-year-old autistic male, who was also sexually abused by BASS.
On January 30, 2018, Wake County Child Protective Services (WCCPS) notified the GCSO that Victim 2 reported multiple forms of sexual abuse endured at the hands of BASS. Victim 2 also substantiated that BASS took sexual photographs of Victim 1 with his cellphone, which BASS periodically showed to Victim 2.
Based on the substantiated sexual abuse involving Victims 1 and 2, a search warrant was obtained and executed at BASS’ residence on February 16, 2018. A cellphone belonging to BASS and other physical evidence was seized. Forensic investigation of the cellphone indicated that, on August 14, 2016, BASS produced at least one image of Victim 2 that constituted child pornography under the law. Evidence also proved that BASS engaged in sexual contact with Victim 2 on multiple occasions.
This case was part of the Project Safe Childhood initiative, a national program aimed at ensuring that criminals exploiting children are effectively prosecuted by making full use of all available law enforcement resources at every level. For more information about this important national project, Project Safe Childhood, go to www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
The investigation of this case was conducted by Homeland Security Investigations, Granville County Sheriff’s Office, and the Wake County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Melissa Belle Kessler prosecuted the case for the government.
News releases are available on the U.S. Attorney’s webpage at http://justice.gov/usao-ednc. Follow us on Twitter @USAO_EDNC.
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