New Albany native Benjamin Bishop pleaded guilty last Friday to the charge of child exploitation.
Bishop, 26, of 623 Glendale Road in New Albany, was arrested Aug. 16, 2012 for allegedly having an inappropriate relationship with a minor.
Ever since getting bonded out with a $25,000 bond last year, he has been represented by his lawyer, Anthony L. Farese of Farese, Farese, and Farese Attorneys from Ashland.
Under a plea agreement, Bishop received 10-year suspended sentence through Mississippi Department of Corrections, he received five years post release supervision, he has to pay a fine of $1,000 to the Mississippi Children’s Trust Fund, plus court costs, and is required to register as a sex offender.
District Attorney Ben Creekmore said, “We did what we thought was in the best interest of the victim and the court sentenced him to 10 years suspended and five years post release supervision. He also has to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life and the public is put on notice of what he is capable of.”
As long as Bishop doesn’t commit any offense, doesn’t break the law, submits to random drug tests, doesn’t leave the state without permission from his parole officer, and reports on a monthly basis to his parole officer, his conviction will remain as it is currently.
At the time of his arrest, he was a part-time jailer at the department. Even though his arrest took place in Union County, he was transported to the Chickasaw County Jail and was booked into the jail at 7:13 p.m. on Aug. 16, 2012.
Bishop was a jailer at UCSD from May 1, 2012 until the day of his arrest.
According to the indictment handed down by the grand jury, “…within the jurisdiction of the Court did unlawfully, willfully and feloniously by computer, knowingly entice, induce, persuade, seduce, solicit, advise, and coerce, a 15-year-old child under the age of 18 to meet with said Benjamin Bishop for the purpose of engaging in sexually explicit conduct as defined Section 97-5-31 of the Mississippi Code of 1972, annotated, as amended, in violation of the provisions of Section 97-5-33.”