Walton Co. Sheriff's Office

DEFUNIAK SPRINGS MAN GETS 40 YEARS FOR CHILD MOLESTATION, CHILD PORN

OFFICE OF STATE ATTORNEY
FIRST JUDICIAL CIRCUIT OF FLORIDA

July 7, 2017
PRESS RELEASE

Bill Eddins, State Attorney for the First Judicial Circuit, announced today that 27-year old
Jason Cody Hughes entered a plea of No Contest yesterday to three counts of Lewd
or Lascivious Molestation of a victim less than 12 years of age, three counts of
Promoting Sexual Performance of a Child, ten counts of Possession of Child
Pornography, two counts of Using a Computer to Solicit a Parent to Consent to Sexual
Conduct of a Child, one count of Transmission of Pornography, one count of Showing
Obscene Material to a Child and one count of Domestic Battery Strangulation. He was
immediately sentenced to 40 years in the Department of Corrections, 25 of which is a
mandatory minimum which must be served day-for-day. Upon the completion of the 40
years, he will be on Sex Offender probation for the rest of his life and will be required to
wear an electronic monitor. He was also designated as a Sexual Predator and can
have no contact with the victim or any minors.

These charges arose in August of 2016 after the defendant contacted a mother via
Facebook about paying money to her in exchange for sexual activity with her young
daughter. Walton County Sheriff’s Office investigators began an undercover operation
during which the defendant, while thinking he was chatting with another mother, offered money in exchange for sexual activity with a young child. Investigators with both
Walton County Sheriff’s Office and the Department of Children and Families began
interviewing children that the defendant had access to and one child disclosed that she
had been molested multiple times by the defendant. The child also disclosed that the
defendant had shown her images of child pornography.

Search warrants were executed on the defendant’s computer and images of child pornography were found as well as evidence of the other crimes he had committed. The defendant admitted that he was the one soliciting the moms for their children and that he had sent an image of child pornography to the undercover officer during the chat.
The investigation was conducted by the Walton County Sheriff’s Office with assistance
from the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center and Assistant State Attorney
Jennifer A. Lieb prosecuted the case.