A man who claims he was wrongfully convicted by a jury in Chattanooga Federal Court of possession and distribution of child pornography on Monday bid his family goodbye and told them to "forget me."
James Paul Lowe also told his wife of 24 years, Stacy Lowe, that he was divorcing her and she should move on with her life.
Lowe told Judge Sandy Mattice "how badly I feel for these children" and said he is "innocent of all charges."
He said, "My family and I have suffered greatly for something I did not do. I am not a monster."
Agents said over 13,000 images of child pornography were found on Lowe's computer, counting those from 75 videos. Prosecutor Terra Bay said the hard drive had been changed out five months earlier and the period involved with child pornography may have been much longer than the five months found by the jury.
She said the images included children being "raped, sodomized, tortured and humiliated."
Ms. Bay asked for a sentence within the guideline range of 210-240 months, while attorney Chris Varner sought a five-year sentence, saying even that "would be an atom bomb" for someone with a prior spotless record.
After Lowe is released, he will be on supervised release for 15 years and will be under a number of strict conditions.