Former Chesapeake bus driver indicted on federal child porn charges

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larry homan

Larry Homan

CHESAPEAKE, VA (WAVY) — A former Chesapeake bus driver previously arrested for inappropriately touching students on his bus has been indicted on federal child porn charges.

According to court documents, 71-year-old Larry Homan persuaded young girls to perform sexual acts, and federal prosecutors say he recorded the whole thing.

The indictment says, on four separate occasions starting as far back as 2012, Homan had contact with girls between the ages of 8 and 10. The documents also say he distributed what he recorded.

Back in July, Homan was arrested by Chesapeake police. Officers say Homan was a bus driver for the school system and had a young girl sit on his lap and inappropriately touched her.

The Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office will be dropping state charges Tuesday to make room for the federal case. The state does have the option though to purse their own charges in the future.

Copyright 2015 WAVY-TV. All rights reserved

See the originial article HERE.


Former Firefighter with Gun Who Solicited Minor Going to Prison

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Lester Photo

RAY C. LESTER

Louisa, VA – Today, Louisa Commonwealth’s Attorney Rusty McGuire announced that Ray C. Lester, 29, was sentenced to twenty years in prison with ten years suspended for two counts of solicitation of a minor.
 
Lester was initially arrested on January 5, 2015 as part of a winter break Craigslist sting conducted by the Louisa County Sheriff’s Office, Albemarle Police Department and the SOVA Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.   He was convicted of two counts of soliciting a minor in Louisa Circuit Court on June 24, 2015.
 
During the course of the email conversation, Lester solicited sex acts from the 14 year old girl on multiple occasions.  They eventually agreed to meet near her home in Louisa County.   Lester attempted to scout out the agreed location from a nearby vantage point but all his efforts got him was an introduction to the members of the Task Force.  They arrested Lester and searched his vehicle.  During the search of the vehicle, the officers found a .40 semi-automatic pistol with 13 rounds in the driver’s side door and a recently cut six foot rope on the center console.  At sentencing, Lester attempted to argue that the gun was for protection and that he wasn’t aware of the rope.  The evidence at sentencing showed that the rope was clearly visible on top of the center console and could have been used to tie up the hands of the child.
 
            Speaking on the sentence McGuire said “Mr. Lester’s behavior highlights the danger that children face in cyberspace today.  Not only are predators trying to exploit our children, this one showed up with a gun and rope.  We are lucky that the child happened to be an undercover ICAC officer. ”
 
Adam Ward, Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney, who prosecuted this case with McGuire, said “Justice was served today.  This sentence sends the message that those who prey on children will experience a significant period of incarceration.  We are grateful to the dedicated law enforcement officers of the Louisa County Sheriff’s Office, Albemarle Police Department and SOVA ICAC Task Force for bringing Mr. Lester to justice.”

Lynchburg man arrested on warrants related to the sexual exploitation of a minor

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CLEVELAND LEROY COAXUM, JR

Bedford, VA –  On Friday July 31, 2015, Cleveland Leroy Coaxum, Jr., of Lynchburg, was arrested on warrants related to the sexual exploitation of a minor. Coaxum was charged with three felonies under Code of Virginia statute § 18.2-374.3, Use of communications systems to facilitate certain offenses involving children.

Investigators from Bedford County Sheriff’s Office were made aware of an incident that took place between Coaxum and a minor. Investigators from the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, (SOVA ICAC) began to vigorously investigate the alleged incident and were able to develop evidence that supported the charges against Coaxum.

Coaxum was subsequently taken into custody without incident. Investigators may obtain additional charges, pending completion of the computer forensics examination on item(s) seized.

Coaxum is currently being held in the Bedford Adult Detention Center, without Bond.

Released by: Sheriff Mike Brown

Wounded Veterans Training in Bedford Co. to Fight Online Predators

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hero

Image courtesy of WSET

Bedford Co., VA - Twenty-three wounded veterans began training in Bedford County Monday to fight online child exploitation.

The fourth class of the HERO Child Rescue Corps will work for three weeks at the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force office.  They will then complete six weeks on forensics training in Northern Virginia before beginning internships with agencies across the country.  The program will qualify them for employment in the field of computer forensics. 

The training program is funded by the federal government and PROTECT, a charitable child protection organization.  The computers the veterans will use were provided by Moose International through the  Safe Surfin' Foundation.

At a welcome event Monday morning PROTECT Executive Director Grier Weeks was presented a key to Bedford County by acting County Supervisor Carl Boggess.  Sheriff Mike Brown presented each veteran with a challenge coin.  Local Vietnam Veteran Steve Bozeman presented the Purple Heart recipients with challenge coins and memberships in the local Military Order of the Purple Heart Chapter.  Retired Air Force General Dave Young also spoke to the class.

Liberty University is providing bus transportation for the veterans to the training facility.

Copyright 2015 Worldnow and WSET.  All rights reserved.

See the original article HERE.

Retired Ohio teacher charged with solicitation of minor in Southwest Virginia

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JOHN WACHAUF

Image courtesy of WCYB

Buchanan, VA - On July 27, 2015, John Wachauf, 58 years old, of St. Mary, Ohio was arrested at his home by authorities from Auglaize County Sheriff’s Office Ohio based on an investigation by the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office for solicitation of a minor under the age of 15. The seven month investigation by Investigator Mark Lowe, who is also a member of the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, coordinated with the Buchanan County Commonwealth Attorney’s Office in securing the charges against Wachauf based on the findings of that investigation. Wachauf a teacher, recently retired from the Lima City Schools in Ohio.

After securing the warrant for solicitation of a minor under the age of 15, Investigator Lowe contacted the Ohio authorities, who in turn obtained a search warrant for the residence of Wachauf at 16920 S. R. 116 in St. Marys, Ohio. During that search, computer equipment and electronics was confiscated along with approximately 20 pounds of suspected marijuana.

Sheriff Foster states, “My office is dedicated to protecting all children. This person believed he was talking to a child in Buchanan County, and that could have been any child here. It just turns out it was an undercover investigator he was talking to. And it was an added bonus that we assisted in getting a lot of illegal drugs off the streets in America.” Sheriff Foster also adds, “I would like to thank the Auglaize County Sheriff’s Office, Allen County Sheriff’s Office, Lima Police Department and the Auglaize/Mercer County Grand Lake Drug Task Force in Ohio for their assistance in the capture of this criminal.”

Wachauf remains in the Auglaize County Correctional Center in Ohio. He has waived extradition and will be brought back to Buchanan County Virginia to answer to the charges in the near future.

Bedford County man arrested on child pornography charges

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Cameron Boyd

Bedford, VA – On April 7, 2015, Cameron Boyd, of Forest, VA, was arrested on charges related to the possession of child pornography.

In 2013 Cameron Boyd became a person of interest to the SOVA-ICAC when a Detective from Lynchburg Police Department downloaded child pornography from a suspect believed to be within the city of Lynchburg. Further investigation led to the discovery that the suspect lived in Bedford County, at which point the case was referred to the Bedford Sheriff’s Office.

In 2014, investigators from the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office’s assigned to the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Unit, executed a search warrant at the residence of Boyd, 27, of Forest, Virginia, seeking evidence related to the internet activity involving the possession of child pornography. Numerous pieces of evidence were collected, including laptop computers, and digital storage media, which were submitted for forensic analysis. Upon completion of the analysis, the case was presented to the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s office for review, and Boyd was subsequently indicted by a grand jury on April 3, 2015.

Lynchburg Police Department is an affiliate agency with the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, which has been administered by the Bedford Sheriff’s Office since the task force program was created in 1998, through a federal grant.

Chesterfield man arrested on child porn charges

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Walter Blanco-Maldonado (Image Source: Chesterfield Police)

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - Walter Blanco-Maldonado is facing serious charges after police say they executed a search warrant at his home in the Amber Leaves Apartments - just off Walmsley Boulevard.  Investigators say they found child porn items on a computer and made the arrest Thursday morning.  Blanco-Maldonado is facing several child porn possession charges. Court records show he's due in court next month.

Copyright 2015 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved

See the original article HERE.

 

Former Navy Top Gun Instructor Found Guilty on Charges of Production Child Pornography and Obstruction of Justice

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Daniel Chase Harris, 31, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, was convicted today by a federal jury after a 12-day trial on 31 counts including production of child pornography, use of a facility of interstate commerce to entice a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity, receipt of child pornography, transportation of child pornography, possession of child pornography and obstruction of justice.
 
Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Clark Settles, Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations Washington, D.C.; Randy C. Krantz, Commonwealth’s Attorney for Bedford County; and Bedford County Sheriff Mike Brown of the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce, made the announcement after the verdict was accepted by U.S. District Judge Mark S. Davis.
 
Harris was indicted by a federal grand jury on a superseding indictment on September 17, 2014.  According to court records and the evidence at trial, Harris was a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy and a Navy Top Gun instructor stationed at Naval Air Station Oceana and was originally arrested by Bedford County Sheriff’s Office in November 2013.  The investigation and evidence at trial revealed that Harris posed online as a teenage boy and would convince young teen girls between the ages of 12 and 17 to send him risqué pictures of themselves.  He then extorted the girls to send him additional, sexually graphic and explicit images of themselves or he threatened them with posting the images online or sending the images to family or friends. Nine victims were involved in this case, three of whom are from Virginia.  
 
Harris faces a maximum penalty of life in prison when sentenced on July 13, 2015.  The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
 
Homeland Security Investigations and the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (SOVA ICAC) led the investigation in this case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth M. Yusi and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Wes Nance, Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney for Bedford County, are prosecuting the case.
 
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.  Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:14-cr-76.
 
See the original article HERE.
 

Two Arrested on Online Solicitation Charges

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A joint undercover operation took place from Dec 29th-31st, 2014 between Louisa County Sheriff's Office (LCSO) and Albemarle County Police Department (ACPD), both members of the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.  The Operation resulted in the arrest of Ray C. Lester of Madison, Va and Jonathan A. Schnyer of Charlottesville, Va on charges of solicitation of a minor by computer or other electronic means, a class 5 felony.

Ray C. Lester, 28 of Reva, VA

Ray C. Lester, 28 of Reva, VA

Ray C. Lester of Reva, Va was arrested on January 5, 2015 by LCSO and ACPD and was apprehended without incident in the parking lot of the Arby’s in Zion Crossroads in Louisa County. During the arrest a .40 Cal S&W semi-automatic hand gun in a holster was discovered in his possession. 

At the time of his arrest Ray C. Lester was employed as a driver for Madison Wood Preservers. He had previously worked as a dispatcher for Culpeper County Sheriff's Office.  Mr. Lester is also a volunteer at Reva Fire and Rescue in Culpeper and a volunteer for Madison County Fire and Rescue. He is married with a three year old daughter. Mr. Lester is currently being held in the Central Virginia Regional Jail in Orange County, Virginia.  His next court date will be in the Louisa County General District Court on March 5, 2015.   Ray C. Lester was held without bond partly because his age being 14 years the senior of the individual he was said to be soliciting.

Jonathan Schnyer, 54 of Charlottesville, VA

Jonathan Schnyer, 54 of Charlottesville, VA

Jonathan A. Schnyer (Snay-er), 54 of Charlottesville, VA, was arrested on January 28, 2014 by officers from LCSO and ACPD at a business in which he is part owner, Wooden Sun, a Fireplace and Patio business in Charlottesville.  He is a former UVA Associate Director of Institutional Assessments, Youth Minister and Soccer Referee (High School, Youth League and College).  Jonathan Schnyer was arrested and interviewed without incident and was held without bond at ACRJ. 

At approximately 4:40pm on January 28th, 2015 a Search Warrant was served by Charlottesville Police Department (CPD) on his business on 2nd St SE, Charlottesville, VA, seizing several computers, cell phones and network equipment.  LCSO ICAC & Spec Ops detectives along, with detectives from CPD and ACPD were involved in executing the search warrant, interviews and arrests.

15 Years of Protecting Children from Predators

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Image Courtesy of WSET

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Sheriff Mike Brown recently hosted a reception in celebration of 15 years of protecting children from online sexual predators.

The Bedford County Sheriff's Office (VA), Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, was created by Sheriff Brown when the Sheriff’s Office, was one of only ten agencies in the country to be awarded a federal grant back in 1998, by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).

Originally known as Operation Blue Ridge Thunder (BRT), this task force was born and in full swing by 1999.  With only a handful of investigators and one evidence technician, they worked tirelessly and not only began perfecting online cases, they also went out into the community to educate and raise awareness about the many predators lurking online, surfing for their next child victim.  

Now known as the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (SOVA ICAC), they represent over 123 law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies across the Commonwealth of Virginia.  The task force’s main office utilizes a full staff; including investigators, digital forensic examiners, and support staff.  Members of the SOVA ICAC task force conduct training throughout the year for personnel from agencies across the United States and world.  Nationwide, the ICACs have grown to 61 coordinated task forces representing over 3,000 federal, state, and local law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies.

Special guest speakers for this reception included Mr. Ron Laney, Senior Advisor to the Administrator of OJJDP, (retired), who is also known as “The father of the ICAC task Forces”, and is to be credited with the great success of the creation ICAC program throughout the United States.

Erik Estrada, also known as “Ponch” from the wildly popular TV series “CHiPs”, and who is a sworn deputy with the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office and active proponent of Internet safety for children, was on hand to speak to attendees and praise the work of SOVA ICAC. 

Also recognized during this celebration was former Captain Rick Wiita, the first Commander of the SOVA ICAC, as well as former Sergeant Sergio Kopelev, the author of the DOJ Grant that created the SOVA ICAC task force.

sergiowiita

Russell County Man Sentenced To Sentenced To 22 Yeaars In Prison For Possession Of Child Pornography

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A Cedar Bluff, Virginia man was convicted last week on child pornography charges has been sentenced in Russell County Court.Stephen M. Wright

Steven M. Wright, age 24, will serve 22 years of his 122-year sentence with 100 years having been suspened. Wright was found guilty of 959 counts of possession of child pornography.

Upon release from prison, he will be on probation for the rest of his life and must comply with Virginia Sex Offender Registry. He was also ordered to undergo sex offender treatment.

Original Article posted in The Lebanon News on Wednesday, June 11, 2014

In Bedford County, Task Force Polices the Digital Shadows

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by ALEX ROHR

Sgt. Steve Anders recalls slowly scouring 1,800 hours of VHS tapes. He would press play, then fast forward. Then stop. Then play, fast forward, and stop all over again, trying to scrape up every second of illegal video.


ICAC2The method of storing child pornography has developed from pictures, to video, and to digital media, making it easier to manage and disperse, said Anders, the lead investigator of the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.


But developing technology also has enabled officers to more efficiently and effectively catch the offenders who make up the online child pornography market, and those soliciting images or personal contact.


The SOVA-ICAC headquarters in Forest serves as an investigative hub by facilitating contact among federal, state and local agencies, investigating predators online and scrutinizing evidence in its forensic lab.


Because the task force works with 118 local agencies and other ICAC headquarters, it receives funding from multiple sources, including the state and its member agencies. But every investigator at the facility is a sworn Bedford County Sheriff's Office deputy.


"When these first formed back in the late 1990s, Bedford was one of the original ones," said Bedford County Commonwealth's Attorney Randy Krantz. "The goal was to put ... a seamless web of protection on the internet."


While the net has been knit across the web with 61 ICAC headquarters, offenders take advantage of continuing advancements in technology to break through the seams.icac1


"When criminals got horses, law enforcement had to get horses. When they started robbing trains, we had to start positioning ourselves on trains and airplanes. When it started happening in the digital world, we had to position ourselves there as well," Krantz said.


Anders said the task force's primary responsibility is catching those who solicit minors or who they believe to be minors — actually undercover police officers — online. Sometimes investigators receive tips and then pose as children in virtual chat rooms. Other times, officers are first contacted by offenders. Deputies also investigate child pornography possession and distribution.


"The porn industry, legal and illegal, drives technology," Anders said. ... "As new technologies come out, the predators start finding ways to exploit it for their purposes."


He said child porn images became more common with Polaroid cameras because pictures didn't need to be developed at a photo lab.


The Internet caused another spike.


"It allows a sense of anonymity where they can at least experiment," he said.

Former RU Professor Sentenced to 15 Years

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by MELISSA POWELL

RADFORD — A former Radford University criminal justice professor will spend 15 years in prison after pleading guilty on Thursday to child pornography and drug charges. haft1


Taj Mahon-Haft, 35, entered pleas in city Circuit Court to 50 counts of possession of child porn, three counts of possession of a Schedule I or II drug, resisting arrest, obstructing justice and possession of marijuana.


Judge Joey Showalter accepted a plea agreement, sentencing Mahon-Haft to 100 years in prison with 85 years suspended. Mahon-Haft will be placed on 10 years of supervised probation upon release.


Mahon-Haft had been facing 50 additional counts of possession of child porn but those were dropped Thursday — along with nine counts of production of child porn and one count of assaulting a police officer — by city Commonwealth's Attorney Chris Rehak.


Mahon-Haft spoke only when answering the judge's questions about his plea and to ask if he could be moved from the New River Valley Regional Jail to a state prison as quickly as possible.


Lloyd Snook, a Charlottesville-based lawyer on Mahon-Haft's defense team, said after the sentencing that for some reason, Mahon-Haft has been in isolation for nine months.


"He couldn't abide the possibility of more delays in the trial or a bad result," Snook said. "He didn't have the stomach to fight it farther."


Mahon-Haft's legal troubles began when two Radford police officers entered his home in the 2000 block of Third Street on Dec. 22, 2012, after a contractor working nearby reported that a door was open at the residence.


The police officers involved have testified that they entered to check on a potential burglary or any injured occupants inside.


haft2Officer Ben Mullins has testified that while he and Cpl. Kayla Stultz were clearing and securing the house, he saw, in plain view, a white powdery substance, a razor and what he knew to be marijuana. Mullins has said that he then left to obtain a search warrant.


Mahon-Haft was charged with possessing pentedrone, alpha-Pyrrolidinovalerophenone (alpha-PVP), 4-Fluoroamphetamine (4-FA) and marijuana. The first three are Schedule I drugs found on Virginia's list of regulated synthetic drugs, often marketed as "bath salts."


Mahon-Haft told authorities that the bath salts were for academic purposes and later submitted a paper to the prosecution that he said was part of his ongoing research into the drugs, Rehak said. In April, Mahon-Haft ceased to be an employee of Radford University, where he had previously taught a "War on Drugs" seminar.


Police seized laptops and hard drives as part of the drug investigation, which led to the discovery of child pornography images and videos, according to testimony. Rehak said Thursday that about 10,000 images and videos were discovered on Mahon-Haft's devices.

Radford Man Charged with Sex Crimes Against a Child

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by JACOB DEMITT

A Radford man has been charged with numerous sex crimes involving children after an investigation that involved an online meeting with a Pulaski County female under the age of 14.

Arthur William Jones II, 43, faces three counts of indecent liberties with a child and 25 counts of carnal knowledge of a child, according to a Radford-issued media release Monday.Radford


Under Virginia law, the term "carnal knowledge" refers to a wide range of forms of sexual contact.

The investigation that led to the charges was initiated by family members of the victim, according to the release. Jones was arrested on Sunday and was being held Monday in New River Valley Regional Jail without bond.

The case is still under investigation and more charges are expected, according to the release.

 See the original article HERE.

Roanoke Counselor Indicted on Child Porn Charges

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by JORDAN FIFER

A Roanoke counselor was indicted on nine child pornography charges Monday after a May operation by two detectives with a child predator task force.

Nathan Tyler Simmons, 31, is charged with nine counts of felony possession of child porn. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison on each charge.

According to a search warrant filed in Roanoke Circuit Court in July, two Roanoke police detectives with the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force in May identified a Virginia-based computer that was "offering to participate in the distribution of known or suspected child pornography."

NTS

The warrant said a detective downloaded five videos via the Internet from a computer later identified as Simmons' showing explicit sexual images of boys between the ages of 6 and 17. Simmons was later arrested.

At the time of his arrest, Simmons worked for New Choices Counseling in Roanoke as a qualified mental health professional, a type of counselor. Deborah Caldwell-Bono, an attorney for owner David Geho, has said Simmons worked with "all age groups."

Simmons is being represented by attorney Patrick Kenney. The two declined to comment at a hearing in early September.

 

See the original article HERE.

Campbell Co. Man Facing 11 Child Porn Charges

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By Angela Hatcher

Campbell Co., VA - A Campbell County man is in jail, accused of making child pornography.

Zachery Morris was arrested Wednesday by the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.

Investigators say they found evidence indicating Morris produced sexually explicit material involving a minor.

Morris is facing 11 child pornography charges, and investigators say there could be more to come.

 

 See original article here.

Child Porn Charges Mount for Danville Suspect

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BY ALLISON M. ROBERTS

Ticey Lee Thompson — already facing 70 child pornography charges in Danville — was indicted by a grand jury March 11 in Halifax County on 21 charges including sexual battery and production of child pornography.

Ticey Thompson

Thompson, 31, was charged with six counts of aggravated sexual battery — a charge stemming from acts depicted in the child pornography pictures — and 15 counts of production of child pornography, according to a news release from the South Boston Police Department.

Fourteen of those charges are a second or subsequent offense involving children less than 15 years of age, police reported.

"These charges stemmed from a lengthy investigation involving the South Boston Police Department, Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and the Danville Police Department," the release stated.

Sgt. Stephen Anders with the Bedford County Sheriff's Office said the investigation is still ongoing. Anders said Thompson was initially identified as the result of an undercover investigation into file sharing, which eventually led to the search warrant in Danville.

An Internet Crimes Against Children investigator found an Internet protocol address that was trading child pornography and was able to connect to him and download child pornography from Thompson, Anders said. The result of that investigation led to other information and Thompson was linked to a previous investigation, Anders said.

"Through the forensics on the computers, it was discovered that the actual photos may have been locally produced as opposed to being obtained from somewhere else," Anders said. "South Boston was able to identify pictures that may have been produced in their jurisdiction."

Police believe the incidents leading to the charges occurred between Jan. 1, 2006 and Oct. 7, 2010.

Thompson appeared in Danville Circuit Court on March 15 where he was scheduled to plead guilty to 70 child pornography possession charges, but his case was continued because results of a sanity evaluation had not been received.

He was indicted in Danville in December, and is awaiting the results of a sanity test to plead guilty to those charges. Thompson is being held without bond in the Danville City Jail.

 

See the original article here.

Church Hill, TN man charged and arrested by Green County Sheriff's Office

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Snapp David RandallGREENE COUNTY, VA - A Church Hill, Tennessee man has been arrested and charged with: Use of communications systems to facilitate certain offenses involving children, and an Attempt to commit indecent liberties with children.

The investigation conducted by the Washington County Virginia Sheriff’s Office began in December over a period of two (2) days. Online chats with an individual identified as DAVID RANDALL SNAPP, age 54 of Church Hill, Tennessee were conducted by a Detective, during which time several propositions of sexual activity were made by SNAPP.

SNAPP has been extradited to Virginia and is currently being held in the Southwest Virginia Regional Jail in Abingdon, Virginia without bond.

The investigation was conducted by Detective J. S. Blevins as part of the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (SOVA-ICAC). It was the first case worked by Blevins after receiving Undercover Chat Training at the SOVA-ICAC offices in Forest, Virginia in November.

Former Lynchburg College Professor Pleads Guilty to Unlawfully Filming a Student

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auri jones

Lynchburg, VA - Former Lynchburg College professor Auri Jones pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of unlawful filming of another Thursday.

This incident happened at Lynchburg College, where Jones was an adjunct professor.

Officials say investigators found a video on Jones' computer of a female Lynchburg College student. They say the video was taken without the woman's knowledge.

He'll serve 10 days in jail, all on the weekends. He was sentenced to 30 days, with 20 days suspended.

Jones' attorney says he handed over the computer and confessed willingly, but Jones did not want to comment on the way out of court Thursday.

The prosecution says the victim was too embarrassed to appear in court.

Jones was ordered to have no contact with her.

He is set to appear in Bedford County court in April for a similar charge there involving a juvenile that investigators say happened at Mountain View United Methodist Church where Jones worked with young people.

He no longer works at the church or college.

Operation Targeting Child Predators

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MatthewMusselwhiteDetectives with the Albemarle County Police Department have arrested Matthew Musselwhite as the result of a grant funded operation targeting child predators.  The operation, funded by the Department of Criminal Justice Services, targets internet crimes against children. The grant provided overtime hours and equipment for detectives to catch predators online. 

The operation began on Wednesday, January 30th and resulted in Musselwhite’s arrest on Tuesday, February 6th. The 30-year old was arrested and charged with soliciting a minor online, a felony offense. He was chatting with someone who he believed was a 13 year old girl. When Musselwhite traveled to see the minor at a location in Charlottesville, he was arrested by detectives with the Albemarle County Police Department.

Grant funded operations like this allow the Department to be proactive in our approach to catching predators. Online predators are a serious concern in our society today and these operations are essential in the fight against the sexual exploitation of children. The ACPD is committed to working with our federal, state and local partners in an attempt to address this disturbing crime trend.

Gloucester Sheriff's Office Arrests DOD Police Officer

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On January 14, 2013 Gloucester County Sheriff’s Office received a complaint from a 17 year old victim and her mother regarding some online activity.  The victim reports that she met a subject online who was an adult and they had several conversations starting back in December through text messaging. The content of the conversations became sexually explicit and the adult male asked the victim to send him nude pictures of her.  The investigation revealed that the suspect was a resident of Virginia Beach and with the assistance of the Virginia Beach Police Department’s Internet Crimes against Children Task Force members; a search warrant was executed at his Virginia Beach residence on the evening of January 23, 2013.  The suspect identified as John Andrew Steele, 39 Year Old Male, of the 5100 Block of Foxon Drive in Virginia Beach. Investigators also learned that Steele was employed by the Department of Defense as a Civilian Police Officer at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth. Numerous items of digital evidence were recovered during the search warrant.  On January 24, 2013 Steele was arrested on two counts of use of a communications device to solicit a minor for certain sexual offenses, and two counts of Production of Child Pornography. Steele is currently being held in the Virginia Beach City Jail with no bond.

 

Moneta man will spend a decade in prison for child pornography!

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MARTIN SR44 year old Ricky T. Martin of Moneta, VA was convicted by a jury in September on 36 counts of possession of child pornography. A Bedford County judge upheld the sentencing recommendation of 10 years on Tuesday. Investigators with the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, in 2011 found images on Martin’s computer as well as film and negatives of a young relative. The girl, now in her 30s, was not aware of the photos and said she believed the pictures were taken in North Carolina around 1997. According to the prosecutor, Martin could face additional charges.  The North Carolina authorities may file charges as well.