Greenbelt, Maryland – A criminal complaint has been filed charging Derrell Lamar Hooker Orange (“Hooker Orange”) age 36, of Brandywine, Maryland, with the enticement of a minor and possession of child pornography. The criminal complaint was filed on April 1, 2021, and unsealed at Hooker-Orange’s initial appearance on April 2, 2021
The criminal complaint was announced by Acting United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Jonathan F. Lenzner; Special Agent in Charge James R. Mancuso of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Baltimore; Colonel Woodrow W. Jones III, Superintendent of the Maryland State Police and Sheriff Michelle Cook of Clay County Sherriff’s Office.
According to the affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office (“CCSO”) of Green Cove Springs, Florida, responded to a sex offense call in which an adult female discovered sexually explicit messages on her 12-year-old daughter’s cell phone. CCSO spoke with the victim at her residence and discovered the victim had been communicating with “Lamar Thompson” of Washington, whom she believed to be a 16-year old male, from approximately July 2020 through October 2020. The victim stated she met “Thompson” on a video creation application and continued to communicate with him, primarily through text message and cellular phone calls.
Based on reports by CCSO, CCSO observed sexually explicit text messages and images on the victim’s phone. With the adult female’s consent, the cell phone was placed into evidence at the CCSO. On October 22, 2020, the Clay County State’s Attorney allegedly received information that identified Hooker Orange as the subscriber who had been communicating with the victim.
The affidavit alleges that further review of text messages exchanged between Hooker Orange (allegedly posing as Lamar Thompson, a 16-year-old male) and the victim revealed that the minor victim not only disclosed her age to Hooker Orange but also informed him that she was attending junior high school at the time. Hooker Orange’s number was allegedly saved in the victim’s phone as “Bsf Forever.” According to the affidavit, Hooker Orange sent the victim sexually explicit messages and requested that the victim send him sexually explicit images and videos of herself.
The affidavit further alleges that Hooker Orange told the victim he wanted to see her and mentioned traveling to meet the underaged victim. The victim allegedly advised Hooker Orange that she would like to see him, but he’d have to “wait a few years”.
According to the affidavit, on March 16, 2021, law enforcement executed a search warrant at Hooker Orange’s residence, where he resides with two other individuals. Law enforcement seized Hooker Orange’s tablet and cellular telephone and interviewed the other residents. The other residents allegedly advised law enforcement that Hooker Orange was constantly on the phone with individuals whom they believed to be minors. Forensic review of Hooker Orange’s devices allegedly revealed images and videos of child pornography.
If convicted, Hooker Orange faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in federal prison and maximum of life in prison for enticement of a minor and a maximum of 20 years in prison for possession of child pornography. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors. Hooker Orange had a detention hearing in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt on April 5, 2021 and was ordered to be released under the supervision of U.S. Pretrial Services pending trial.
A criminal complaint is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by criminal complaint is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.justice.gov/psc and click on the “Resources” tab on the left of the page.
Acting United States Attorney Jonathan F. Lenzner commended the HSI, the Maryland State Police, the Prince George County Police Department and the Clay County, Florida Sheriff’s Office for their work in the investigation and thanked the Prince George’s County Police Department for its assistance. Mr. Lenzner thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Leah Grossi and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig Fansler, who are prosecuting the federal case.