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Guilty plea for Md. officer in porn case

By Associated Press

Federal prosecutors say a former Anne Arundel County police lieutenant has pleaded guilty to receiving child pornography.

Forty-seven-year-old James Cifala of Edgewater entered the plea on Thursday.

He will be sentenced to five years in prison if the court accepts the plea agreement. Sentencing is set for Dec. 21.

Prosecutors say Cifala manipulated a 16-year-old girl into sending him sexually explicit photographs of herself via cell phone.

By Associated Press  | November 5, 2010; 8:08 AM ET
Categories:  Anne Arundel, From the Courthouse  
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Comments

So stupid. 5 years? I bet the kids that almost beat the random guy to death in Briggs Chaney get less time.

Posted by: Gary34 | November 5, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

i just got a smart phone and it's so difficult sending pictures on it i question how anyone could be "manipulated" into sending photos.
the girl is 16. she knew what she was doing.
I think 5 years for this is ridiculous.

the human body is a work of art.
Americans are such prudes.

that crazy Missy person running for congress got to show horrible pics of dead fetus parts on tv that probably disturbed thousands of people, including children, yet a cop is going to go to jail for five years because a 16 yr old girl showed him her beautiful naked body via a cell phone pic.

that is just insane to me.

Posted by: MarilynManson | November 5, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Anything involving anyone under 18 is clearly wrong, but maybe there should be a separate category called "youth pornography", just as there is a distinction between "child sexual abuse" and "statutory rape"? A 16-year-old is certainly not an adult, but just as certainly not a "child", either.

Posted by: FrankIBC | November 5, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

I just love all the trolls defending the CRIMINAL here!! G@d forbid anything get in the way of the troll's ability to get off sexually but abuse of a minor!! Guess someof you have trouble with relationships!!A COP who is that stupid should not be on the force.

Posted by: 10bestfan | November 5, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

anyone defending this guy needs to read the whole story on hometownannapolis.com - here is an excerpt:

Under state law, a former county police lieutenant was allowed to have sex with a 16-year-old girl last year. But his penchant for having the girl send him naked photos of herself? That's another matter.

James Cifala, 47, of Edgewater, pleaded guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore to receipt of child pornography. Under a plea agreement, he is expected to be sentenced Dec. 21 to five years in prison. He also will have to register as a sex offender.

"James Cifala was a sworn law enforcement officer who violated his oath in an egregious manner by engaging in a relationship with a child who was more than 30 years younger," U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein said in a statement. "I hope this case will send a wake-up call to parents about the need to monitor their children's use of cellular telephones and other communication devices."

Cifala - who at the time of his Jan. 22 arrest was a supervisor in the county's Western Police District and co-owner with his wife of a Rita's Italian Ice in Edgewater - was allowed Thursday to return to his parent's home in Edgewater. Since February, he has lived with them while on house arrest.
...
The charges stem from a series of text and picture messages Cifala traded last year with a girl who previously worked for him at the Rita's on Mayo Road.

Prosecutors said the victim's mother called the FBI about Cifala in September 2009. Agents searched the girl's cell phone and recovered sexually explicit pictures - including some of the victim and at least one of a man they believed to be Cifala.

No photos of the victim were found on Cifala's phone or home computers, according to the plea agreement. While investigating, however, agents found more than 10 explicit photos of other underage girls on an old, unused computer found in Cifala's home.

Prosecutors said Cifala first met the victim in 2007, when she was only 14. The two spoke about having sex, but Cifala told her they had to wait until she was 16 years old, when it would be legal.

Over the next two years, Cifala used social networking websites and a prepaid wireless phone to stay in contact with the victim. The two traded more than 1,300 text and picture messages in the three weeks between Aug. 14 and Sept. 6, 2009, prosecutors said.

Excerpts from several of the text message conversations indicate Cifala was having sex with the girl.

Attorneys contacted by The Capital said any sexual relationship between Cifala and the victim was legal. Under state law, a person who is 16 years old or older may have sex with anyone as long as that person does not have a position of authority over him or her.

Cifala joined the county Police Department in 1982 and served most of the past decade as the head of its Crime Prevention Unit, speaking at community meetings and schools. He left the department on Feb. 1, police said.

Posted by: jjtwo | November 5, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

anyone defending this guy needs to hear the whole story (from hometownannapolis.com):

Under state law, a former county police lieutenant was allowed to have sex with a 16-year-old girl last year. But his penchant for having the girl send him naked photos of herself? That's another matter.

James Cifala, 47, of Edgewater, pleaded guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore to receipt of child pornography. Under a plea agreement, he is expected to be sentenced Dec. 21 to five years in prison. He also will have to register as a sex offender.

"James Cifala was a sworn law enforcement officer who violated his oath in an egregious manner by engaging in a relationship with a child who was more than 30 years younger," U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein said in a statement. "I hope this case will send a wake-up call to parents about the need to monitor their children's use of cellular telephones and other communication devices."

Cifala - who at the time of his Jan. 22 arrest was a supervisor in the county's Western Police District and co-owner with his wife of a Rita's Italian Ice in Edgewater - was allowed Thursday to return to his parent's home in Edgewater. Since February, he has lived with them while on house arrest.
...
The charges stem from a series of text and picture messages Cifala traded last year with a girl who previously worked for him at the Rita's on Mayo Road.

Prosecutors said the victim's mother called the FBI about Cifala in September 2009. Agents searched the girl's cell phone and recovered sexually explicit pictures - including some of the victim and at least one of a man they believed to be Cifala.

No photos of the victim were found on Cifala's phone or home computers, according to the plea agreement. While investigating, however, agents found more than 10 explicit photos of other underage girls on an old, unused computer found in Cifala's home.

Prosecutors said Cifala first met the victim in 2007, when she was only 14. The two spoke about having sex, but Cifala told her they had to wait until she was 16 years old, when it would be legal.

Over the next two years, Cifala used social networking websites and a prepaid wireless phone to stay in contact with the victim. The two traded more than 1,300 text and picture messages in the three weeks between Aug. 14 and Sept. 6, 2009, prosecutors said.

Excerpts from several of the text message conversations indicate Cifala was having sex with the girl.

Attorneys contacted by The Capital said any sexual relationship between Cifala and the victim was legal. Under state law, a person who is 16 years old or older may have sex with anyone as long as that person does not have a position of authority over him or her.

Cifala joined the county Police Department in 1982 and served most of the past decade as the head of its Crime Prevention Unit, speaking at community meetings and schools. He left the department on Feb. 1, police said.

Posted by: jjtwo | November 5, 2010 3:10 PM | Report abuse

anyone defending this guy needs to read the whole story on hometownannapolis.com - here is an excerpt:

Under state law, a former county police lieutenant was allowed to have sex with a 16-year-old girl last year. But his penchant for having the girl send him naked photos of herself? That's another matter.

James Cifala, 47, of Edgewater, pleaded guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore to receipt of child pornography. Under a plea agreement, he is expected to be sentenced Dec. 21 to five years in prison. He also will have to register as a sex offender.

"James Cifala was a sworn law enforcement officer who violated his oath in an egregious manner by engaging in a relationship with a child who was more than 30 years younger," U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein said in a statement. "I hope this case will send a wake-up call to parents about the need to monitor their children's use of cellular telephones and other communication devices."

...
The charges stem from a series of text and picture messages Cifala traded last year with a girl who previously worked for him at the Rita's on Mayo Road.

Prosecutors said the victim's mother called the FBI about Cifala in September 2009. Agents searched the girl's cell phone and recovered sexually explicit pictures - including some of the victim and at least one of a man they believed to be Cifala.
...
Prosecutors said Cifala first met the victim in 2007, when she was only 14. The two spoke about having sex, but Cifala told her they had to wait until she was 16 years old, when it would be legal.

Over the next two years, Cifala used social networking websites and a prepaid wireless phone to stay in contact with the victim. The two traded more than 1,300 text and picture messages in the three weeks between Aug. 14 and Sept. 6, 2009, prosecutors said.

Excerpts from several of the text message conversations indicate Cifala was having sex with the girl.

Attorneys contacted by The Capital said any sexual relationship between Cifala and the victim was legal. Under state law, a person who is 16 years old or older may have sex with anyone as long as that person does not have a position of authority over him or her.

Posted by: jjtwo | November 5, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

anyone defending this guy needs to read the whole story on hometownannapolis.com - here is an excerpt:

Under state law, a former county police lieutenant was allowed to have sex with a 16-year-old girl last year. But his penchant for having the girl send him naked photos of herself? That's another matter.

James Cifala, 47, of Edgewater, pleaded guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore to receipt of child pornography. Under a plea agreement, he is expected to be sentenced Dec. 21 to five years in prison. He also will have to register as a sex offender.

"James Cifala was a sworn law enforcement officer who violated his oath in an egregious manner by engaging in a relationship with a child who was more than 30 years younger," U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein said in a statement. "I hope this case will send a wake-up call to parents about the need to monitor their children's use of cellular telephones and other communication devices."

...
The charges stem from a series of text and picture messages Cifala traded last year with a girl who previously worked for him at the Rita's on Mayo Road.

Prosecutors said the victim's mother called the FBI about Cifala in September 2009. Agents searched the girl's cell phone and recovered sexually explicit pictures - including some of the victim and at least one of a man they believed to be Cifala.
...
Prosecutors said Cifala first met the victim in 2007, when she was only 14. The two spoke about having sex, but Cifala told her they had to wait until she was 16 years old, when it would be legal.

Over the next two years, Cifala used social networking websites and a prepaid wireless phone to stay in contact with the victim. The two traded more than 1,300 text and picture messages in the three weeks between Aug. 14 and Sept. 6, 2009, prosecutors said.

Excerpts from several of the text message conversations indicate Cifala was having sex with the girl.

Attorneys contacted by The Capital said any sexual relationship between Cifala and the victim was legal. Under state law, a person who is 16 years old or older may have sex with anyone as long as that person does not have a position of authority over him or her.

Posted by: jjtwo | November 5, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

jjtow- gotta compulsion?!

Posted by: 10bestfan | November 5, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

jj2 Gotta compulsion or 2 or 3?!!

Posted by: 10bestfan | November 5, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

So let me get this straight. It is legal for an adult in MD to have a sexual relationship with a 16 year old but if they have explicit pictures of the 16 year old that's a crime for which you get 5 years in jail? Something isn't right here.

Posted by: 6thsense79 | November 5, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

hey - sorry about the multiple posts, it kept erroring, so i kept resubmitting. this case does bother me though - the fact that no charges were filed on the sex with a minor, because the cop wasn't in a 'position of authority'. So if a boss, or a cop isn't considered a position of authority, what it?

Posted by: jjtwo | November 5, 2010 6:17 PM | Report abuse

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