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Emily Welker, Published April 01 2013

ND man gets 19 years on federal child porn charges

FARGO – In what the judge called “an unusual case,” a Carrington man was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court here to 19 years in prison for child pornography possession.

Christopher Emly, 25, was convicted last November by a jury on one count of receipt of materials involving the sexual exploitation of minors and three counts of possession, all felonies. The crimes were committed in Foster County between October and November of 2010.

Emly has an extensive history of prior offenses, including a violent offense, a sexual assault, and two cases of stalking his ex-wife, all of which were misdemeanors, prosecutors said.

Prosecutor Jennifer Puhl asked for 20 years for Emly, saying he’s a high risk to reoffend, “whether you’re disgusted by it or you have sympathy for him.”

Defense attorney Christopher Lancaster asked for a 10-year sentence, saying that in gathering the pornography online, he sought as much of it as possible, not specifically child porn.

Judge Ralph Erickson countered that, saying, “When you’re using the (search) term, ‘baby sex’ – come on.”

“It strikes me this is a person who’s dangerous,” he said, adding that Emly’s criminal history indicated a lack of empathy and a pattern of accusing his victims of lying while avoiding responsibility for his crimes.

Erickson also said it was unusual for child pornography offenders to also have violent priors.

As part of his sentence, Emly is required to register as a sex offender, to submit a DNA sample and to have no contact with anyone under 18.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Emily Welker at (701) 241-5541