HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAAY) -- Jeremy Joseph Nelson was sentenced to 140 years in prison Tuesday afternoon for setting up a series of cameras in Huntsville business restrooms he serviced as a janitor.
Nelson's father spoke in federal court Tuesday before the sentencing, saying Jeremy had been too ashamed to talk to his family since his arrest. His father also told the victims in court that he understood why his son couldn't be forgiven and he prayed there was room to heal.
But one woman speaking on behalf of one of Nelson's victims, said in court that she no longer changes her child's clothes in dressing rooms.
Another witness, a grandparent, said one child is afraid to go into the yard. Another, she said, will not go back to dancing classes. One of the places Nelson was accused of setting up a camera was Ann's Studio of Dance in Huntsville.
Prosecutors pushed for a 180-year sentence, saying Nelson had communicated with other sex offenders and had looked at more than a million images of child porn on the Internet. Prosecutors also said they could have brought another 130 charges against Nelson but didn't because of a plea agreement.
But Nelson's attorney argued that prosecutors reached a number of 1 million images viewed by counting each separate frame of video Nelson watched, and said most of what Nelson viewed were videos. He asked the judge to impose a 30-year sentence.
Nelson pleaded guilty to four counts of sexual exploitation of a child, two counts of possession of child pornography and one count of child pornography distribution.
Nelson was working for a New Market janitorial business when he installed hidden cameras in several Huntsville businesses, according to a federal indictment.
Nelson acknowledged in the guilty pleas that for several years he used hidden cameras to record underage girls in the bathroom of his residence, as well.
Nelson also faces state charges.