March 11, 2017
PENSACOLA, FLORIDA – Thomas E. Matassa, 23, of Gulf Breeze, made a first appearance today in the U.S. District Court in Pensacola after a federal grand jury returned an indictment charging him with receipt and possession of child pornography. The indictment was announced by Christopher P. Canova, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Florida.
The indictment alleges that, between January 2014 and February 2016, Matassa received child pornography. The indictment further alleges that, in February 2016, he possessed child pornography involving a minor under age 12. The defendant is currently being detained at the Santa Rosa County Jail. The detention hearing and arraignment have been scheduled for March 16, 2017, at 12:30 p.m.
The case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, and the North Florida Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David L. Goldberg.
An indictment is merely an allegation by a grand jury that a defendant has committed a violation of federal criminal law and is not evidence of guilt. All defendants are presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial, during which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Florida is one of 94 offices that serve as the nation’s principal litigators under the direction of the Attorney General. To access public court documents online, please visit the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida website. For more information about the United States Attorney’s Office, Northern District of Florida, visit http://www.justice.gov/usao/fln/index.html.