A Harvard man who was charged with distributing child pornography has been sentenced to 180 days in jail after pleading guilty to reduced charges.
Scott M. Thomas, 31, of the 900 block of North Hart Street in Harvard, was indicted on four counts of distributing child pornography, two of which are Class X felonies and the other two are Class 1 felonies.
The Harvard Police Department was notified in March 2020 by the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) about a Harvard resident, identified as Thomas, who was possibly in possession and distributing child pornography.
Harvard Deputy Police Chief Tyson Bauman said at the time that a joint investigation with the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office, FBI and Harvard police was initiated.
Thomas was arrested hours later that same morning on March 19, 2020, Bauman said.
Court documents alleged that Thomas disseminated several photographs of child pornography in February 2020.
Two of the photos showed an unknown man engaging in a sex act with a child, who appeared to be under 13, a Harvard police detective said in a criminal complaint.
Thomas sent the photos on the Kik messaging app to another user, which turned out to be an undercover federal law enforcement agent, the complaint said.
Thomas was transported to the McHenry County Jail and ordered held on a $100,000 bond. He was released after posting 10% of his bond.
Court records show that Thomas pleaded guilty last month to amended charges of two counts of possession of child pornography, a Class 2 felony.
In exchange, the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office dismissed Thomas’ more serious charges.
McHenry County Circuit Judge Robert Wilbrandt sentenced Thomas to 180 days in the county jail, 30 months of probation and sex offender counseling.