LOUISVILLE, Ky. — LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – A man who police say used Facebook and Backpage to sell a girl for sex has been sentenced in federal court.
Silky Clark will spend 21 years in prison.
He pleaded guilty to the production of child porn and trafficking a minor and was sentenced by U.S. District Judge David Hale on Monday.
Clark could have faced up to 30 years to life behind bars but pleaded guilty to get a lesser sentence of 15 to 21 years.
Judge Hale said it was a difficult decision and called the facts of the case disturbing.
For the first time, Clark's mother, Sheila Bagley gave a tearful character testimony to the court.
Her message was people can change, her example, her own life.
Clark’s mother told the court she had been a victim of trafficking when she was 15 and Clark’s dad was her trafficker. She told the court that Clark simply modeled the behavior he saw and pointed out the power of drugs and alcohol.
Bagley also said she met the victim. Holding back emotion, her voice cracked as she explained she saw herself when she met the young girl. Although she had suspicion and offered the girl refuge, she said she saw the fake ID and believed the teen was an adult.
Bagley testified if she had known the girl was a minor, she would have turned him in.
Bagley’s message was people can change if given the chance – her experience her proof. She told the court, after a half century on the streets she gained her sobriety and earned a bachelor’s degree in social work.
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Judge Hale explained, the crimes are significant oppressive crimes of exploitation and a lesser sentence would not be just.
Clark will serve more than 21 years in prison, 25 years of supervised release and will have to pay $61,000 in restitution to his victim plus court fees.
There is no parole in the federal system and Clark waived his right to appeal as part of the agreement.