An Arizona woman has been caught up in the federal investigation into an alleged child pornographer in Colorado.
On August 4, authorities charged 39-year-old Sarah Cox of Clarkdale with three counts of knowingly receiving child pornography. The complaint, filed in Arizona U.S. District Court by Homeland Security Investigations, alleges that Cox and Richard Hennis of Colorado Springs exchanged explicit online messages in which Cox described her desire to sexually abuse a friend's 3-year-old daughter.
In late March, federal agents arrested Hennis, 40, and 18-year-old Brandi Leonard, for producing child pornography involving an infant. Over the course of a two-month exchange, authorities allege, Leonard told Hennis that she'd sexually abused a 1-year-old girl. Hennis encouraged her to do it again and send him photos, which she did, according to a March news release by the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Both pleaded not guilty; a trial is scheduled for a December.
Hennis' digital trail led investigators to Cox. According to the complaint filed in Arizona, the two allegedly conversed online in November and December 2015 using the instant-messaging app Kik, Cox under the username "JadeJeckel" and Hennis under "funguy4u2use." Investigators identified Cox via an image file she sent Hennis: a photo of a woman with multiple tattoos on her face and a large skull and spider web tattooed on her upper chest. The distinctive body ink was a match for the driver's-license photo on file with the Arizona Department of Transportation.
A spokesman with the Arizona U.S. Attorney's Office declined to discuss the case for this story.
Federal investigators allege that at about 3:30 a.m. on December 23, 2015, Cox received three images from Hennis. Two showed an adult's fingers manipulating a infant girl's vagina; a third depicted a woman (presumably Leonard) performing oral sex on the same baby.
In earlier exchanges, Hennis and Cox had discussed child sexual abuse in explicit terms, according to transcripts included in the complaint.
On November 29, 2015, funguy4u2use messaged JadeJeckel about a woman who had told him she'd sexually abused a 1-year-old girl.
"Yummy," Cox allegedly replied.
Then: "I thought about getting my friend's 3 yr old girl."
And later: "I'm going to get the 3 yr old."
"When?" Hennis responded.
"What are you going to do to her?"
"Eat her and touch her."
"I'm so jealous," Hennis typed, and then, "Will you let me watch?"
Cox: "I wish you were doing it with me."
The exchanges do not indicate that Cox actually carried out the scenario she described to Hennis.
New Times unsuccessfully attempted to contact Cox by phone and via various social-media accounts maintained under the username JadeJeckel.
(UPDATE: New Times reached Cox on Monday morning. Click here to read what she has to say about the charges.)