Reminder: Convention Photographer ‘Sci-Fi Photo Guys’ Is Operated By Convicted Sex Offender Daniel Silverman

Sci-Fi Photo Guys” is a company that does green screen photography and photo manipulation for cosplayers and photo ops at a variety of conventions. This year, they’ve already provided services or exhibited at GnomeCon, Lexington Comic & Toy Con, and CT Gamer Con. Sci-Fi Photo Guys provides a high quality service, with really only a few competitors that can match the quality.

And they’re owned and operated by a convicted sex offender.

In 2009, the owner of Sci-Fi Photo Guys Daniel Louis Silverman (who also goes by D. Siverman, Dee Silverman, and D.L. Silverman) plead no contest to charges of aggravated sexual battery for sexually abusing a twelve year old girl. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison with five years of probation, though we do not know how much of that sentence was served. He was also required to register as a sex offender in Virginia, and you can find that registration here.

Silverman has gone to extensive efforts to scrub his name publicly from the company. You won’t find his name listed anywhere on the official website, and recently he’s deleted his old Facebook page and started a new one. But when you pull up the state corporate registry, you’ll find his name — with an address that matches what was on the state sex offender registry up until last February. This is his company, and purchasing its services puts money in his pockets.

Having him at your con puts him in proximity of your attendees.

Most of us in the con scene are trying as hard as we can to make conventions safer places, and having a convicted sex offender present doesn’t really do that. It especially doesn’t help if no one is aware of it.

Trae Dorn

Trae Dorn has been staffing conventions for over twenty years, and is a co-founder of Wisconsin’s longest running Anime convention No Brand Con. Trae also wrote and drew the now completed webcomic UnCONventional, and produces the podcasts BS-Free Witchcraft, On This Day With Trae, Stormwood & Associates, and The Nerd & Tie Podcast. This leads many to ask when the hell they have time to actually do anything anymore. Trae says they have the time because they “do it all quite poorly.”

39 thoughts on “Reminder: Convention Photographer ‘Sci-Fi Photo Guys’ Is Operated By Convicted Sex Offender Daniel Silverman

  • April 10, 2017 at 10:54 am
    Permalink

    Thanks for the heads-up. Seems like he’s worked in this general section of the country which means we’ll be on the look-out.

    Reply
  • April 10, 2017 at 12:55 pm
    Permalink

    Report his Facebook. Facebook terms of service are clear that sex offenders can NOT ever EVER EVER have a Facebook profile.

    Reply
    • April 10, 2017 at 1:09 pm
      Permalink

      His personal Facebook profile no longer exists, and this may be why.

      It’s most likely that he’s not the “admin” on his company’s current Facebook page, as we do know he has someone working for him.

      Reply
    • April 14, 2017 at 11:08 am
      Permalink

      Which is why Facebook should never be supported by any American. Any U.S. government that uses Facebook should be sued and forced to stop.

      Reply
      • April 14, 2017 at 11:16 am
        Permalink

        “Any U.S. Goverment?” Are you implying that there’s more than one?

        You are a bizarre cartoon of a person.

        Reply
        • April 14, 2017 at 2:56 pm
          Permalink

          Umm, duh, yes. Any government in the U.S. is a U.S. government. And any of them that have Sex Offender Registries are criminal regimes. They should be attacked by any means possible.

          Reply
          • April 14, 2017 at 3:04 pm
            Permalink

            Right, but the only government you’d refer to as the “U.S. Goverment” is the Federal government. State and local governments would never get referred to as “a U.S. Government.”

            And if the governments make the laws, and the registries are in accordance to said laws, how can they be “criminal?” You can debate the morality or ethical nature of their policies, but words have meanings, bro.

    • April 10, 2017 at 10:35 pm
      Permalink

      He hides his name on his business, and tries to keep people from finding out who he is. He’s hiding.

      And I’m sorry, but I don’t believe that story for a minute. He initially confessed to police and plead no contest. Innocent men don’t do that.

      Reply
      • April 11, 2017 at 6:01 am
        Permalink

        I’m sorry, but although it’s reasonably rare, innocent people do confess to crimes. Sometimes it’s a matter of police brutality, but there can be a number of factors that can lead to false confessions even if police aren’t doing anything obviously wrong. Mental illness can be one, but the environment of an interrogation can trigger deeply irrational behavior among people who would never show anything unusual under conventional circumstances. I could list other reasonably common reasons. Is he likely guilty if he confessed? Sure. But it’s not proof of anything.

        Reply
        • April 11, 2017 at 7:05 am
          Permalink

          You seek to be ignoring the “and plead no contest” part of the sentence.

          Reply
      • April 12, 2017 at 12:06 pm
        Permalink

        Innocent people confess all the time. Give the guy a break. You DON’T know what happened…not really.

        Reply
        • April 12, 2017 at 2:45 pm
          Permalink

          “He initially confessed to police AND plead no contest.”

          There are two parts to that sentence. And frankly, the article is clearly just pointing out that he’s a registered sex offender. If that doesn’t bother you — fine. But it’s true, and sure bothers the shit out of the rest of us.

          Reply
          • April 13, 2017 at 10:05 am
            Permalink

            I don’t know what you mean by “the rest of us”. You are NOT speaking for me. You obviously have never had any dealings with our so-called justice system. There is rarely any “justice”. Usually, someone will plead “no contest” to protect themselves should a civil suit follow and accepting a “plea deal” usually results after multiple threats from the prosecutor of added on charges. “Justice” in this country is usually very expensive, hence, our prison system filled to capacity. You really should be speaking from experience for either yourself or someone you care about. I do believe that what goes around, comes around.

          • May 4, 2017 at 2:50 am
            Permalink

            Apparently youve never delt with our justice system before to be this ignorant.

            If you ever have the joys of facing a crime specially one of a serious nature they will give you a choice. Take a plea deal with a light sentence or they will do everything possible to make sure you get put away for years.

            For many even if innocent they take the plea deal as they cannot afford to hire an attorney to fight for them. As far as a public pretender you may or may not get help there as its a known fact they will often trade cases like playing cards with the DA and sell you down the river if the DA goes light on another case.

      • April 14, 2017 at 11:10 am
        Permalink

        Sorry but it is quite well known that innocent men do do that. So well known in fact that you’ve proven that you know little. Big surprise.

        Reply
  • April 10, 2017 at 11:46 pm
    Permalink

    The following insight is neither support of nor an indictment of the actions the subject of this story.

    A few years ago, his company was involved with a convention I am familiar with. They did both photo-ops with guests and a vending photo set for various attendees. When similar accusations were presented to our committee, we did investigate.

    Here is what we found out by talking to various representatives the Roanoke County Circuit Court:
    -there is nothing preventing him from attending a convention or being around children
    -he had completed a psych evaluation- the test concluded that he is 0% likely to repeat
    -he had a clean record before this incident and he has a had a clean record since then
    -the court noted he his remarkable job skills in graphic design and elsewhere
    -for good behavior, he was granted early parole

    With these statements from the court, we did confront the subject to allow him to speak his side of the story.
    He shared with us:
    -he passed a polygraph test that was required by the probation office- the test states he is truthful in claiming innocence- the test does not get him off the list, but a copy is public record in the state of Virginia
    -he pled guilty because the deal allowed him to avoid jail time and saved the money or hassle of going to trial

    With that information, our event did not ask him back.
    Even though he had served his time and the court system states he is no longer a threat to us and anyone around him, we could not bring him back because of this exact situation. All people have to say is sex offender and that is it. There is no explanation. there is no clearing of charges or convictions. We ended it so we did not have to go through a PR nightmare to clean it up. It was easier to end the business relationship.

    On a personal note. This article is purely click bait. This is nothing new. The case is nearly a decade old and has been publicly record for awhile. Even the headline with “reminder” is just rehashing an already told story to just tell it again.

    Again, none of the above makes excuses or expunges his record. What he did or sentenced for doing is a disgusting criminal act. But your last 2 paragraphs about proximity and safety have been determined to not be a factor by the courts and the system that charged him in the case. All it takes is one phone call to get more to a story than just pulling some documents off the Internet and interjecting some opinion.

    Reply
    • April 11, 2017 at 7:14 am
      Permalink

      I’m sorry, but the fact is polygraphs are meaningless. He wouldn’t be anywhere near the first offender to be in such deep denial that passing it would be simple. The don’t judge reality, just whether or not the subject BELIEVES something (and they don’t even do that reliably).

      We have a system biased against victims, a man who assaulted a 12 year old girl who doesn’t think he did anything wrong, and him purposefully attending shows which often put him in proximity to kids not unlike his prior victim.

      Perhaps I’m wrong — and I hope that I am — but considering what happened at Aki Con 2013, I’d rather be safe than sorry.

      Reply
    • April 13, 2017 at 9:54 pm
      Permalink

      Thanks for taking the time to share your experience. I agree with you on pretty much all points.

      What Silverman did was disgusting. The point, for me, is that i feel that once a person has done their time they should be allowed a second chance. It’s better for society if a person is employed and productive, no?

      On a side note: The sex offender registry isn’t what most people think it is. The average age of offenders being placed on the SO registry is 14. Often for doing perfectly normal kid stuff. Even John Walsh, creator of the modern registry, should be on the list- his wife was underage when they began having relations.

      Reply
      • April 13, 2017 at 10:03 pm
        Permalink

        If you think he deserves a second chance, then give him one. The important part is that you make the decision to do so knowing his history.

        And you’re right — the reason why someone is on the registry is important. People should always make sure they do their research.

        Reply
  • April 11, 2017 at 1:01 pm
    Permalink

    This is an unbelievably disgusting piece of junk article. You obviously have no sense of morality for me to appeal to, but you have no justification for what you are doing. Whether or not Mr. Silverman was guilty or not is a moot point — and yes, many who are innocent take pleas. What matters is he served the sentence to the satisfaction of the court for the crime for which he was convicted. He created a business of his own and did well at it. He has had no complaints against him for any inappropriate action. He earned the respect of the people who were his clients. He has a family he loves and who love him. These vigilante actions against him are so despicable that I barely have words. You are destroying his ability to earn a living and provide for those who depend on him. Do you think he will be “safer” unemployed and possibly homeless? What on earth is the matter with people like you? I wish I had the funds to finance a lawsuit on his behalf against you for defamation of character and actions affecting his livelihood.

    Reply
    • April 11, 2017 at 1:24 pm
      Permalink

      He is a convicted sex offender who is attending family events which put him in proximity of minors. He is free to go earn a living in one of the myriad of other lines of work which DON’T put him in proximity of kids.

      This is not a “vigilante action.” This is keeping a community informed that there is someone convicted of sexually abusing a child in their ranks.

      Reply
      • April 11, 2017 at 1:34 pm
        Permalink

        However, as pointed out by a previous poster, this man has had a psych eval (as required in Virginia) that shows he has a 0% chance of re-offence. Combined with the passed polygraph examination, it would seem he is not a risk at all. Looking at the photos from his site, the vast majority of individuals he works with are adults. He has also been working Sci-Fi Photo Guys for a number of years now with ZERO incidents reported. So, your article sounds more like crying wolf than anything else.

        Reply
        • April 11, 2017 at 1:50 pm
          Permalink

          Actually, a psychological evaluation conducted at the time (according to a news articles published at the time of his sentencing http://www.roanoke.com/webmin/news/ex-pastor-sentenced-in-sexual-abuse-case/article_15722a6b-e487-5a62-b7c9-3fa4602ae1cb.html ) indicated that he was in denial about the events, and with that a polygraph is essentially useless.

          The fact is he hides this from events that he exhibits at, and both convention staffers and attendees deserve to be informed about this sort of thing.

          Reply
          • April 11, 2017 at 4:08 pm
            Permalink

            And now we’re deleting people’s comments here, are we? Wow.

          • April 11, 2017 at 4:13 pm
            Permalink

            Looking at the poster’s comment history we found they exclusively went around finding posts about sex offenders with almost identical language. One of our rules at Nerd & Tie is the “good faith” rule — someone has to be here to contribute to discussion, not just post something they put everywhere else and run.

            The second comment deleted was my own response, as it no longer made sense.

            I mean, for pete’s sake — if if was because the poster disagreed with us, I certainly wouldn’t have left YOUR comment, would I. 😛

          • April 13, 2017 at 10:15 am
            Permalink

            If the post does not contain anything abusive, threatening or the use of profanity, it should stay. Liking an article or agreeing with it should be left out of deleting any post. Btw, I think you meant to say “..if it were because the poster….”. An author should at least practice good grammar.

          • April 13, 2017 at 10:09 am
            Permalink

            Well, I guess there’s a whole list of people who should be banned….you know, for everyone’s safety. Who wants a pick-pocket at these events? Did you ever think that maybe the reason this guy feels he needs to “hide” (if that’s even the case) is because of people like you? You’ve really gone out of your way to convince yourself of what a hero you really aren’t.

          • May 4, 2017 at 2:58 am
            Permalink

            If you had a scarlet letter attached to you wouldnt you want to not draw attention to yourself?

            Seriously man the guy was just trying to make a living. At some point they have to be able to feed themselves and shelter themselves without someone always attacking them.

            Never allowing somebody to survive will be a gigantic danger to everybody if they have nothing more to lose. Lets pretend the guy has mental illness and seeks treatment running attack articles emailing his clients destroying his career now makes him unable to afford the help he may need. What do these type of people do then? Attack people.

  • April 11, 2017 at 4:26 pm
    Permalink

    Hey! I’ve got an idea: MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS!

    Reply
  • April 12, 2017 at 11:30 am
    Permalink

    He paid his debt to society and is trying to earn a living this is what we want these guys to do. Why would you want to get in the way of a guy trying to prove himself. This is a prime example of why I think the registry needs to go back to non public just the police have it or not at all it does nothing but destroy people and families. The rate of re-offence is below 5% anyway it was always a lie that ex sex offenders were a danger. Seems to me Trae Dorn is trying to make this guy fail. There are over 800,000 ex sex offenders in the USA if you turn these people into wards of the state we will go bankrupt. Let them earn their way and show they can be trusted members of society again.

    Reply
  • April 12, 2017 at 6:54 pm
    Permalink

    Sounds to me like Trae Dorn is at the least uneducated, and at the worst, breaking the law. Most state registries place bold disclaimers stating the registry information is not to be used to threaten, intimidate, or harass those on the list. I see you are no stranger to lawsuits, Trae.

    Reply
  • April 12, 2017 at 10:29 pm
    Permalink

    Oh no someone who happens to be a s*x offender trying to make a living. God forbid! Enough of this safety crap. Show me a case where someone on the registry has comitted a s*x crime at a convention. If such a crime were to happen I would bet a year’s wage it was done by someone NOT on the registry. What he did was disgusting, assuming he did indeed do it, but good grief!

    Reply
    • April 13, 2017 at 12:02 am
      Permalink

      You’re right that the only event in the con scene I can think of off the top of my head involved someone not on the registry (Leslie B Shotwell was a convicted sex offender, but not on the registry, when the incident at Aki Con 2013 occurred), but pardon me if I see little difference in the risk.

      Frankly, all this article does is provide basic information about what happened so congoers and convention staffers can make informed decisions. If they think Silverman is worth the risk, let them decide that knowing all the facts.

      Reply
  • April 13, 2017 at 5:38 am
    Permalink

    seems like you have an ax to grind that extends beyond what this guy did in the past…

    the authorities know who this guy is and what he’s done. likewise they know he operates at these types of conventions and I have faith that law enforcement keeps a close eye on him.

    writing an article like this does nothing to protect the public, no matter how well intentioned it may be.

    what it does do is hurt this man and his families livelihood which is actually more likely to lead him to reoffending.

    he went to prison, is likely in therapy, and will be registered for probably the rest of his life… now you want him to not be able to earn a living either?

    someone who feels like they have nothing left to lose is the greater threat to public safety…

    Reply
  • April 14, 2017 at 11:05 am
    Permalink

    There are no informed Americans with brains who support the nanny big government Sex Offender Registries, unless they are getting something immoral from it. They are truly through and through idiotic social policy.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *