Registered sex offender from Columbus sentenced to 55 years in prison

Thomas Sweeney

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A Columbus man will spend 55 years in prison for sex crimes involving a 14-year-old girl.

According to court documents and testimony, 48-year-old Thomas A. Sweeney enticed a 14-year-old female to take explicit pictures and send them to him on his phone. He also tried to coerce her into engaging in sexual activity with him, according to a press release from the Department of Justice.

After a three-day trial, A U.S. District Court jury convicted Sweeney on January 20, 2017 of sexual exploitation of a minor, attempted coercion and enticement of a minor, receipt of child pornography and committing a sexual offense against as minor as a registered sex offender. Judge Watson sentenced Sweeney to a 45-year prison term on each of the first three crimes and ordered him to serve them concurrently, plus an additional ten years for committing a sexual offense against a minor as a registered sex offender.

Sweeney had previously been convicted in 2004 in Franklin County Common Pleas Court for two counts of rape involving a minor. He was sentenced to two consecutive terms of five years in prison for that conviction. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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