Anderson man sentenced to prison for sexually abusing children o - FOX Carolina 21

Anderson man sentenced to prison for sexually abusing children on camping trips to NC mountains

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Joseph Harold Patterson (Source: S.C. Attorney General's Office) Joseph Harold Patterson (Source: S.C. Attorney General's Office)
ANDERSON, SC (FOX Carolina) -

An Anderson man was sentenced to 17 years in prison and a lifetime of supervised release Wednesday after he pleaded guilty of interstate transportation of a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, according to the US Attorney’s Office in Western North Carolina.

In addition to the prison sentence, Joseph Harold Patterson was also ordered to register as a sex offender, to pay a $20,000 court fine and $4,538.42 as restitution.

US Attorney Jill Westmoreland Rose said the case involved multiple victims.

“Mr. Patterson has received a well-deserved lengthy prison sentence for abusing these young men. Some say there is a special place in hell for child abusers and we cannot promise Mr. Patterson will receive that just punishment, but we can guarantee that he will receive a place in the federal penitentiary and for now, that’s the best we can do,” Rose said.

Rose said the investigation began in April 2015 when a concerned parent contacted law enforcement to report that his child had been victimized by Patterson during a camping trip.

Between 2009 and 2011, Patterson made at least three camping trips and took at least three minors

 the Smokemont Campground, located within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Patterson knew the children through his affiliation with a church in Anderson.

During the camping trips, Patterson exposed himself and encouraged the minors to engage in sexual activities, Rose stated.

In addition, Patterson had contact with the victims and other children in his home in which he provided alcohol, pornography, and encouraged sexual discussions and activities.

Patterson entered a guilty plea back in February.

Rose said Patterson also showed pornography to three children in a church bathroom during a church event.

Patterson entered a guilty plea back in February.
Patterson was arrested in August 2015 and charged with 17 crimes in connection with the sexual exploitation of minors.

PREVIOUSLY: Anderson man accused of sexual exploitation of minors denied bond

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