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Wisconsin agency's former director charged with underage pornography

Several posts back, we discussed how accusations of internet crimes such as underage pornography can impact an individual on a personal and professional level. The story revolved around a former Wisconsin Rapids Housing Authority director. He had been the focus of an investigation after underage pornography was found on the computers in the Housing Authority offices.

Now, the former director has been accused of five separate counts of possession of underage pornography. If convicted on all five charges, the penalty could include hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines and more than a 100-year prison sentence. The minimum sentence for the alleged act is three years in prison per count.

When investigators discovered that underage pornography had been downloaded by a computer in the office, they seized all the computers in the office. They then forensically analyzed each one to figure out which computer had downloaded the content.

The search ended with the former director's computer where there were allegedly several videos and images of underage pornography. The former director admitted to downloading the content onto his work computer. All of the charges are related to the files that were found on his computer.

With advances in technology, investigators are resorting to forensic analysis to trace downloads and identify computers and their users. This process as well as the files found on the computer will likely be used to support the criminal allegations against the former director.

As we stated above, the penalties are severe. Even with a minimum sentence, the former director could be spending the next 15 years in prison. Even when he is released, his reputation will never be the same. Though he had been previously accused and sentenced of sexual assault, he maintained his innocence. In this particular situation, he allegedly admitted to downloading the images.

Source: Wisconsin Rapids Tribune online, "Former Housing Authority official faces child porn charges," Karen Madden, 08 July 2011

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