In a disturbing case, a New York City police officer, Christopher Terranova, faces charges of attempting to exploit children and coercion and enticement of a minor. The four-count indictment was unsealed in federal court in Brooklyn. Terranova allegedly used his position as a police officer to gain access to a victim who had previously been a crime victim. The indictment accuses him of engaging in sexually explicit conversations with underage boys through social media, attempting to entice them into taking explicit photographs, and soliciting nude photos. Terranova is also alleged to have brought a boy to a secluded location, directing him to engage in sexual acts.
The charges cover the period between March and May 2023, during which Terranova targeted a 15-year-old boy who had been a robbery victim. After viewing the victim’s personal information in an NYPD database, Terranova messaged him, pretending to check on him after the robbery. He then attempted to engage the victim in explicit conversations and solicited explicit photographs. If convicted, Terranova faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.
United States Attorney Breon Peace emphasized the serious nature of the allegations, particularly as they involve someone who abused their position of trust. The FBI, which takes crimes against children seriously, highlighted the alleged misuse of the badge by Terranova to conceal illegal behavior. The FBI encourages parents and caregivers to have conversations with children about the dangers of communicating with strangers online. The case underscores the importance of protecting minors from those who violate their positions of trust, and authorities are urging anyone with relevant information to come forward.