Bentonville Man Busted By NCIS Agent For Child Porn Sentenced To 60 Years

Max Bishop

A Bentonville man that was busted by a United States Naval Criminal Investigative Services agent for child porn was sentenced to 60 years in prison, according to Benton County Prosecuting Attorney Jim Clark.

Max Bishop, 43, was found guilty by a jury on 30 counts of viewing child pornography on Wednesday (June 25), Clark said.

The jury originally suggested a sentence of 120 years, a total of four years for each count of viewing child pornography, but Judge Brad Karren reduced his sentence to 60 years.

Bishop was originally booked into the Benton County Detention Center on July 2, 2008, and transferred to a prison while awaiting his jury trial date. He was brought back up to the Benton County Detention Center from Pine Bluff on June 25 for his jury trial, according to the jail intake report.

Everything started with an NCIS agent that was communicating with Bishop in a Yahoo chat room on Feb. 22, 2008. The undercover agent chatted with Bishop for a period of multiple months. During that time, Bishop told that NCIS agent that he was involved in various sex acts with an eight-year-old girl and a 10-year-old girl, according to court documents.

On Dec. 20, 2007, a search warrant was provided to Yahoo to obtain account and email information from Bishop’s account. On Dec. 27, 2007, Yahoo provided the information to authorities. On Jan. 2, 2008, a search warrant was given to Cox Communications based on information provided by Yahoo in order to obtain account information on Bishop. That information was given to authorities on Jan. 15, 2008, court documents state.

The information revealed the Cox Communications account was being used by a home in the 3000 block of Southwest Homeplace Avenue in Bentonville. On March 19, 2008, authorities confirmed Bishop lived at the address in question from his landlord, and on March 20, 2008, a search warrant was obtained for Bishop’s residence. It was executed that same day at 3:20 p.m., according to court documents.

While searching the home, authorities found marjiuana, three pipes containing burnt residue and several other digital items like a laptop, a camera, a cell phone, a thumb drive, an MP3 player and more, court documents state.

Bishop told investigators that he didn’t really perform sex acts on girls, and that was just “role play” while chatting online. Authorities asked him if they’d find child porn on any items they confiscated from his residence, and he told them they would, but he couldn’t remember how many images, according to court documents.

A total of 6,956 images containing explicitly photographed children were found, all stored in a file labeled “junk.” In separate folders, 85 more explicit photos of children were found. A total of 100 videos all containing child porn were found as well, court documents state.

Viewing child porn is a class “c” felony, and Bishop will be eligible for parole after 10 years, according to Clark.

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