WASHINGTON – Tyler James Stephens, 25, of Checotah, Oklahoma, was sentenced Aug. 3 to 14 years and eight months in prison for cyberstalking, video voyeurism, burglary, attempted burglary, attempted sexual abuse and coercing and enticing a minor.
According to court documents, Stephens, a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, committed a string of crimes between May 2020 and May 2021.
Stephens roamed Checotah, looking through the windows of residences, and sometimes taking photographs or videos of female victims in various states of undress within their homes.
He broke into or attempted to break into the homes of some female victims of whom he had taken surreptitious images.
Stephens also broke into a residence and attempted to sexually assault the resident while her minor child was in the room.
In two instances, Stephens accessed a social media account belonging to someone else and used it to solicit nude or private images of minors, including by sending an obscene picture to one of the minors.
Stephens also threatened to publicly post a photo of one of the minors and “ruin her life” if she did not comply with his requests.
Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite, Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Wilson for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, and Special Agent in Charge Lester R. Hayes Jr. of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Dallas made the announcement.
HSI investigated the case, with substantial assistance from the Checotah Police Department and Muscogee Nation Lighthorse Police.
Trial Attorney Gwendelynn Bills of the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) prosecuted the case.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.
Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and CEOS, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.