Justice Department Honors Florida Prosecutor for Convicting Sexual Predator and Advocating to Protect Children
WASHINGTON, May 23, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Deputy Attorney General James M. Cole today presented Gregory Schiller, an assistant state attorney in Florida, with the Missing Children's Child Protection Award for his central role in the conviction of a sexual predator and for his efforts to update Florida's child pornography laws. Deputy Attorney General Cole recognized Schiller at the annual National Missing Children's Day commemoration honoring missing children, their families, child advocates and others who protect children, held in the Justice Department's Great Hall.
"Protecting children is one of the important jobs we have," said Deputy Attorney General Cole. "There is no rest for a parent who has lost a child, and there should be no rest for any of us who are in a position to help. There may not be any words we could offer that would ease their pain, but we can and will offer our support – and all the tools at our disposal to help families of missing and exploited children. I am honored to recognize those who work on the front lines to rescue children and bring them home safely."
As a member of the Palm Beach County Sexual Predator Enforcement Unit that investigates and prosecutes online predators, Schiller was instrumental in securing the conviction of Robert Coletto. In 2010, Coletto was arrested and charged with possession of child pornography while on probation for sexually abusing an eight-year-old girl. Schiller coordinated a strong forensic case against Coletto and secured a 25-year prison sentence.
Following Coletto's sentencing, Schiller led efforts to have the state legislature amend Florida's statute to make not only possession of child pornography a crime, but also intentional viewing of child pornography. In the spring of 2011, he addressed the Florida state legislature, arguing that Florida's law against child pornography was outdated and needed to be amended to cover individuals who view child pornography without downloading it and those who hide their collections online. Both houses of the legislature passed the amendment unanimously and Gov. Rick Scott signed the bill into law. The law led to arrests throughout Florida of individuals who, without it, would continue to victimize children today.
President Ronald Reagan proclaimed May 25, 1983, the first National Missing Children's Day to remember Etan Patz, a six-year-old boy who disappeared from a New York City street corner on May 25, 1979. Missing Children's Day honors his memory and the memories of children still missing.
More information about the event and other honorees can be found at www.ojp.gov.
The Office of Justice Programs (OJP), headed by Acting Assistant Attorney General Mary Lou Leary, provides federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. OJP has six bureaus and offices: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime; and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART). More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.
SOURCE Department of Justice, Office of Justice ProgramsBack to top