During the investigation, detectives located flash drives belonging to McClendon which contained two images of children as young as 5-years-old being sexually battered. McClendon was not at the residence, but was staying with a relative in New Smyrna Beach.

Lakeland Man Who Disguised As Female Child In Polk County Child Porn Case, Arrested In Volusia County

LAKELAND, Fla. – A Lakeland man who had a warrant in Polk County was taken into custody in Volusia County on Tuesday, May 24, 2022, for two counts of possession of child pornography (F3).

The investigation began when PCSO detectives received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Endangered Children (NCMEC) about 71-year-old Donald Eugene McClendon, Jr. who was online pretending to be a female named “Teresa” and engaged in explicit sexual conversations with an unknown male minor.

During the investigation, detectives located flash drives belonging to McClendon which contained two images of children as young as 5-years-old being sexually battered. McClendon was not at the residence, but was staying with a relative in New Smyrna Beach.

During the investigation, detectives located flash drives belonging to McClendon which contained two images of children as young as 5-years-old being sexually battered. McClendon was not at the residence, but was staying with a relative in New Smyrna Beach.
71-year-old Donald Eugene McClendon, Jr.

Working with the New Smyrna Beach Police Department, PCSO detectives located McClendon and took him into custody. 

McClendon told detectives that he was pretending to be a 16 or 17-year-old female online and used a photo of a minor girl as his profile picture.

McClendon also admitted the flash drives that contained the child pornography images belonged to him. All of his devices were seized and will be examined – if any additional files containing child pornography are found, he will be charged accordingly.

“I am grateful for the hard work of my detectives and organizations like NCMEC who vow to protect our children from sexual exploitation and abuse. This investigation is still ongoing – more charges related to the felony possession and distribution of images and videos of children being sexually battered are possible after we do a complete forensic analysis on his devices,” said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.

McClendon is currently in the Volusia County Jail being held with no bond on the Polk County warrant. He will be transferred to the Polk County Jail. His previous criminal history includes a charge of Aggravated Battery and Domestic Violence Battery. The attached PCSO jail mugshot is from his May 5, 2022 arrest.

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