Martin County, Kentucky Man Sentenced to 60 Years in Prison for Producing and Distributing Child Pornography

PIKEVILLE, KY– According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Kentucky, Donald York, 60, of Beauty, Ky., was sentenced on Thursday, by U.S. District Judge Robert Wier, to 60 years in prison, following his convictions for producing and distributing sexually explicit images of a minor. 

York was convicted by a jury in April 2023, of four counts of production of child pornography and two counts of distributing child pornography.  According to the evidence presented at his trial, York coerced a 15-year female victim, who was in his care, to engage in sexually explicit conduct so that he could produce images of that conduct.  York then uploaded some of these images to a pornographic website.    

Under federal law, York must serve 85 percent of his prison sentence; and upon his release, he will be under the supervision of the U.S. Probation Office for life.

Carlton S. Shier, IV, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky; Brian Jones, Acting Special Agent in Charge, FBI Louisville Field Office; Col. Phillip Burnett, Commissioner, Kentucky State Police; and Sheriff John Kirk, Martin County Sherriff’s Office, jointly announced the sentence.

The investigation was conducted by FBI, Kentucky State Police, and the Martin County Sherriff’s Office.  The United States was represented in the case by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Justin Blankenship and Jason Parman.

This case was prosecuted as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.  Led by U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

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