Friday, August 31, 2001

College's computers had less child porn than thought

The Associated Press

        MARIETTA, Ohio — Authorities investigating a child pornography case say computers at Marietta College had about 40,000 images, not the 270,000 originally believed.

        The revised figure came after Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation computer experts completed their examination of the nearly 300,000 images confiscated from the college's computer system, said Marietta Police Sgt. Rick Meek.

        At first, authorities thought that all the images contained child pornography. Closer inspection revealed the collection included images of flowers and other subjects as well as adult pornography, he said.

        Evidence against a former computer expert at the college, Eugene Robert Anderson, of Parkersburg, W.Va., could be presented to the Washington County grand jury as early as October, Mr. Meek said.

        Mr. Meek said authorities are seeking an indictment on as many as 40 charges, including counts of child pornography and organized crime.

        Mr. Anderson was arrested Dec. 15 and charged with unlawful sexual conduct with a child between 13 and 16. He was released on a $3,500 bond before the charge was dropped because authorities wanted to investigate further.

        Investigators have said they believe an Ohio University employee helped delete files from the Marietta employee's computer server after his arrest.

        An attorney who represents Mr. Anderson said he was unaware of the progress of the police investigation.

        “I can't say what will affect the case, if there is a case,” attorney George Cosenza said. “He's not been charged.”


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