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Benjamin Wilcox sentenced to 90 years for child pornography

Staff Report

HAYS COUNTY — Benjamin Wilcox, 44, was sentenced to 90 years in prison for several counts: one count of Sexual Performance by a Child, three counts of possession of child pornography with intent to promote and eleven counts of possession of child pornography.

Benjamin Wilcox. Photo courtesy of Hays County Jail records.

The investigation of Wilcox began when Wilcox’s former girlfriend reported finding a list with incriminating search terminology amongst Mr. Wilcox’s belongings.

The San Marcos Police Department initiated an investigation that eventually resulted in officers obtaining a warrant and searching several of Wilcox’s electronic devices. Wilcox was found to have photographs and messages on his devices proving that he had been soliciting sex from multiple children on a social messaging app. Several of the children were from Texas and several were out of state.

Wilcox pled not guilty and the case went to trial on February 1, 2022. Following the prosecution’s presentation of their evidence, Wilcox changed his plea to guilty, and the case was rescheduled for a sentencing hearing.

The trial, including the sentencing hearing, was presided over by 453rd Judicial District Judge Sherri Tibbe. After hearing evidence on Aug. 12, Tibbe sentenced Wilcox to 60 years in prison for sexual performance by a child, 20 years for the possession with intent to promote child pornography counts and 10 years on the possession of child pornography counts. The judge ordered some of the charges to be served consecutively, resulting in a total sentence of 90 years in prison.

Hays County Criminal District Attorney Wes Mau congratulated Assistant Criminal District Attorney Katie Arnold who led the prosecution with assistance from Assistant Criminal District Attorney Ben Gillis, as well as the San Marcos Police Detectives who investigated the case and collected the evidence of Wilcox’s predatory activity. These officers included Paul Stephens, David Campbell, Chris Tankersley and Michael Casillas.

“Thanks to the efforts of all involved, from the witness who could not ignore the signs, to the police who followed the evidence, to the prosecutors who refused to let a predator back on the street and finally the judge who values the safety of our children, Benjamin Wilcox will be unable to seek out any more children to victimize,” Mau said.

About Author

Megan Navarro (formerly Wehring) graduated from Texas State University in May 2020 with a bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. In June 2020, she started a summer internship at the Hays Free Press/News-Dispatch through the Dow Jones News Fund and Texas Press Association. She then earned her way to a reporter position later that summer and now, she serves as the editor of the newspaper. Working for a small publication, Navarro wears multiple hats. She has various responsibilities including managing a team of reporters, making editorial decisions, overseeing social media posts, fact checking, writing her own articles and more. Navarro has a heart for storytelling and she believes that journalists are equipped to share the stories that are important to the community.

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