Jacksonville, Florida – A federal grand jury has returned an indictment charging Scott Matthew Yotka (47, Jacksonville) with producing and distributing materials depicting young children being sexually abused. Yotka faces a minimum mandatory sentence of 15 years, and up to 80 years, in federal prison and a potential life term of supervised release. Yotka was arrested at his residence by FBI agents on September 17, 2021, and is currently detained awaiting trial.
According to court documents, on September 15, 2021, Yotka, using the name “Scottnjax44,” utilized a particular social media application (app) to engage in online private conversations with an undercover FBI task force officer in Washington, D.C., who was posing as the parent of a child. Yotka and the undercover officer discussed, in detail, the sexual exploitation of children. Yotka stated that he was sexually active with two young children, both of whom were unable to talk. Yotka sent the undercover officer several photos and a video that depicted two children being sexually abused. Yotka also stated that he was employed as an “emergency dispatcher” and worked “12 hour shifts.”
The FBI’s investigation traced the online messaging activity to Yotka’s residence in Jacksonville and determined that the same “Scottnjax44” user account was also accessed from the City of Jacksonville facility at the Ed Ball Building located in downtown Jacksonville. FBI agents coordinated with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office (JSO) and confirmed that Yotka was employed by JSO as a Police Emergency Communications Officer and that he routinely worked a 12-hour night shift.
On the morning of September 17, 2021, the FBI, assisted by JSO, executed a federal search warrant at Yotka’s residence and arrested Yotka. Following his arrest, Yotka resigned his position with JSO.
An indictment is merely an allegation and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Jacksonville and Washington, D.C., and the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney D. Rodney Brown.
This is another case 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 Attorneys’ 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.
Anyone with information regarding this investigation should contact the FBI Jacksonville office at 904-248-7000.