(AP) A federal appeals court has reversed the conviction of a Maryland man who photographed himself and a 7-year-old neighbor having sex.
Anthony Palomino-Coronado was sentenced to 30 years after being convicted of persuading a child to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of photographing or filming that conduct.
According to evidence at his trial, Palomino-Coronado used his cellphone to take a single picture of the sex act in his basement in Laurel in 2012. Palomino-Coronado, who was 19 at the time, deleted the picture, but the image was recovered by authorities.
A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that even though Palomino-Coronado took a picture, there was insufficient evidence that obtaining a photo was the reason he had sex with the child.