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MUNSTER, Ind.--A man who drove from Wisconsin, to try and have sex with a 10-year-old child in Indiana, has gotten a 20-year-sentence in federal prison. Prosecutors said he was already a convicted sex offender in his home state.

Denton Jerome, 32 years old, of Doylestown, Wisconsin, will also serve five years of supervised release after pleading guilty to one count of attempted sex trafficking of a minor, said United States Attorney Thomas L. Kirsch II.

Jerome was arrested after an undercover operation targeting customers of child sex tourism. On April 18, 2017, Jerome drove from Wisconsin to a hotel in Munster, with the intent to pay for sex with a 10-year-old girl. 

Less than a year earlier, Jerome was convicted for attempted child enticement in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, also as the result of an undercover sting operation, and sentenced to three months in prison. Jerome committed the Indiana offense while on probation from his first conviction.

“Crimes committed against innocent children are particularly egregious. Others who commit these type of offenses, should be warned by this sentence,” said Kirsch. “We and our law enforcement partners aggressively focus our efforts on bringing offenders like Mr. Jerome to justice.”

“Crimes like these have a grave impact on our children,” said James M. Gibbons, Special Agent in Charge of HSI Chicago. “Mr. Jerome’s lengthy prison sentence is a harsh reminder that law enforcement and the courts will not tolerate those who steal the innocence of the children and of our communities.”

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