Child Porn Conviction Adds To Prison Time For Heroin Dealer
By Mike Perleberg
(Lawrenceburg, Ind.) – Extra prison time is being ordered for a man who recorded video of himself engaging in sex acts with a child after trading for heroin.
Shandell Willingham, of West Harrison, was to go on trial for Possession of Child Pornography (level 6 felony) last September in Dearborn Superior Court I. A mistrial was declared when some of the jurors saw Willingham in handcuffs.
The judge feared that the seeing the suspect in cuffs could have prejudiced the jurors as the trial began. Prosecutors said that facility problems in the courthouse contributed to the mistrial.
Another trial attempt won’t be necessary. Willingham, 42, pleaded guilty to the child pornography charge in January. Judge Jonathan Cleary sentenced him to 2 ½ years in prison on the charge. An additional two years were added with a habitual offender enhancement.
Detectives investigating Willingham on drug dealing charges in October of 2014 located a cell phone video of Willingham having sex with an 11-year-old girl. The victim was the daughter of a woman with whom Willingham allegedly traded heroin for sex with the child. Both Willingham and the mother, April Corcoran, are facing life in prison in Ohio for that heinous crime. Their cases are pending in Hamilton County court.
The 4 ½ years for the child porn case will be added to a 42 ½ year sentence Willingham received in Dearborn County last June. In that case, prosecutors said Willingham was dealing heroin from his home on Morgan Road in West Harrison in 2014. The people Willingham was selling to were females between the ages of 17 and 21.
“Just a few years ago, these girls are playing high school sports and now they’re heroin addicts. Their addiction was being fed by this very dangerous man, who now, thankfully, is safely behind bars,” prosecutor Aaron Negangard said at the time of that sentencing.
The latest sentencing in Dearborn County extends Willingham’s stay in prison from 2040 until 2042, at the earliest.