Takoma Park resident sentenced on child pornography charges

A Takoma Park resident was sentenced last week to 12 years in prison by a federal circuit judge in Greenbelt after an FBI search found child pornography on his personal computer.

Larry Bruce Twombly, 54 pled guilty to possession of child pornography on Sept. 14, 2010 and was sentenced on Sept. 30, 2011. Sentencing  was conducted by U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams, who mandated that Twombly register as a sex offender upon his release from prison.

Investigators say he was identified by law enforcement while he was logged into different internet chat forums sharing child pornography files. The FBI searched Twombly’s house in the 6600 block of Westmoreland Avenue in April 2009 and seized his computer.

Forensic analysis of the hard drive revealed approximately 80 images and 57 videos depicting children engaged in sexually explicit conduct. This included children under the age of 12. According to Marcia Murphy, a spokeswoman at the Justice Department, Twombly got these files off Yahoo.com groups and file-sharing programs like Limewire. In addition to receiving these files, Twombly also admitted to distributing child pornography over the internet himself.

This is Twombly’s second police encounter with the police regarding children. In 1989, he was arrested in Brookeville and charged with child abuse of a sexual nature. However, he was found not guilty at trial.

Ironically, Twombly was quoted in an article in the Voice in 2006. When asked what he thought about domestic surveillance for national security, he responded, “They are totally uninterested in what we say in our private conversations, as long as we are not connected to a terrorist group. I call it liberal fear-mongering.”

Apparently, they were on the lookout for more than terrorism.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a Department of Justice initiative launched in 2006 to reduce the instances of child sexual exploitation in the United States. Project Safe Childhood works on a federal, state and local level to consolidate resources to better locate and apprehend individuals who exploit children via the internet.

For more information about Project Safe Childhood, visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov