Army major jailed on federal child pornography charge


This jail mugshot from the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia shows Army Maj. Jason Musgrove, who was jailed after federal authorities charged him with distributing child pornography. Court records say an FBI agent monitoring an online chatroom observed a person sharing nude photos of a teenage girl on Dec. 5, 2019. The agent said he traced the user’s computer IP address to Musgrove’s home. Musgrove is assigned to the Army Cyber Command at Fort Gordon, Georgia, where he holds a top-secret security clearance, according to court records. (Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office via AP)

An Army officer who held a top-secret security clearance shared nude photos of a teenage girl online and discussed plans to drug the girl and have sex with her, according to federal court records unsealed Monday.

Army Maj. Jason Musgrove was arrested and charged with distributing child pornography after an FBI agent monitoring online groups devoted to child pornography and discussions of child sex traced the photos to a computer in Musgrove’s home in Georgia, said documents filed in U.S. District Court.

Court records said Musgrove is assigned to the Army Cyber Command at Fort Gordon in Augusta, where he works as an integrated threats operations officer with a top-secret security clearance.

Maj. Kip Patterson, a Cyber Command spokesman, said the Army is cooperating with civilian authorities in their investigation. He said commanders had suspended Musgrove’s security clearance and taken other “standard Army administrative actions.”

“Obviously the chain of command is very concerned and we’re looking at what actions should be taken,” Patterson said.

Musgrove was being held Monday at the Lincoln County jail. Court records did not list whether he has an attorney who could comment on his behalf .

In an affidavit filed with the court, FBI agent Tripp Godbee said another agent working undercover was monitoring groups on the mobile app Kik when a man logged in last Wednesday and Thursday and began sharing nude photos of a teenage girl.

The agent began swapping online messages with the man, who identified himself as being “employed as an Officer for the Army,” the affidavit said.

The user sharing the photos then discussed his plans to have sex with the girl after drugging her, according to the affidavit.

“I want to be prepared with the proper ingredients for a good night cocktail!” the man said, according to the affidavit. “Right now I’m looking at mixing some cherry NyQuil into a Dr. Pepper.”

That prompted the FBI to obtain the user’s account information from Kik. The affidavit said the information included a computer IP address that agents traced to Musgrove’s home near Augusta.

A federal magistrate judge ordered that Musgrove remain in custody of U.S. marshals, who jailed him in Lincoln County.

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