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SC Resident Pawned Laptop Filled with Child Porn, Arrested on Sex Crime Charges

A man was arrested on sex crime charges after a pawn shop owner found child pornography on a laptop the man sold

A man was arrested on sex crime charges after a pawn shop owner found child pornography on a laptop the man sold

Pawnshop Owner Found Child Porn, Former Owner Arrested on Sex Crime Charges

A man from Mt. Pleasant, SC has been arrested on sex crime charges after a laptop that he sold was found to have several files containing child pornography.

28-year-old Justin Michael Francis was arrested on January 4th on sex crime charges, specifically exploitation of a minor.

In mid-December, Francis sold his laptop to a local Money Man Pawn shop. Because of the holidays, the owner did not turn the laptop on to clean off the files until he returned to work at the beginning of January. It was then that he discovered several incest and child pornography videos saved onto the computer’s hard drive.

According to investigators, the manager of the pawn shop immediately shut down the computer and called the police.

When he was arrested, police say that Francis admitted to downloading the child pornography found on his former laptop. He was given a $25,000 surety bond, and released, after a judge ordered him to stay away from the internet, as well as children under 18 years of age.

An Arrest for Child Pornography is a Serious Sex Crime Charge

Federal law defines child pornography as “any visual depiction, including any photograph, film, video, picture, or computer or computer-generated image or picture, whether made or produced by electronic, mechanical, or other means, of sexually explicit conduct, where

  • the production of the visual depiction involves the use of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct; or
  • the visual depiction is a digital image, computer image, or computer-generated image that is, or is indistinguishable from, that of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct; or
  • the visual depiction has been created, adapted, or modified to appear that an identifiable minor is engaging in sexually explicit conduct.”

A “minor” is defined under federal law as anyone who is under the age of 18 years old.

It is a federal crime to knowingly possess, manufacture, access, or distribute child pornography. All 50 states, and the District of Columbia, have additional laws that criminalize child pornography as a terrible sex crime charge.

South Carolina is one of nine states that has passed laws that require computer technicians, IT specialists, and others who encounter computers in their daily work, to immediately report child pornography if they encounter it. While theses specialists are not required to search computers specifically for child pornography, they must report it as soon as they find it.

The Strom Law Firm Can Help Defend Against Sex Crime Charges and Child Pornography Charges

Sex crime charges in South Carolina can hurt your reputation for a very long time

Sex crime charges in South Carolina can hurt your reputation for a very long time

Have you been given a child pornography charge? Child Pornography Charges are very serious. Many people don’t know this, but getting charged with these type of charges can ruin both your personal and professional reputation. If this has happened to you, if you’ve been accused of possessing or distributing child pornography, you ‘ll need an attorney who will take your side, guide you through the legal system, and fight to protect your rights.

Some of the most common sex crime charges are:

  • Distribution of child pornography
  • Production of child pornography
  • Use of child pornography
  • Possession of child pornography
  • Sex with a minor
  • Sexual assault

All computers have IP address that can be used to identify whether you have accessed child pornography from your computer. Also, you could get caught with child pornography if you have child pornography on your hard drive and have your computer repaired by a technician.

Being caught with child pornography on your computer usually implies that you intentionally downloaded the pornography and purposefully viewed it. The defense attorneys at the Strom Law Firm will aggressively fight to defend your rights and provide you with the best defense against child pornography and sex crime charges. We offer free, confidential consultations to discuss the facts of your case, so contact us today at 803.252.4800.

About Pete Strom

Defending criminal charges including drug crimes, DUI, CDV, mail fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud, computer crimes, money laundering, and juvenile crimes, Pete also handles Federal and State investigations. Representing individuals in Civil Matters including Class Actions, Personal Injury, Qui Tam Actions, Defective Products, Nursing Home Neglect, and Professional Licensing Defense cases. Joseph Preston “Pete” Strom, Jr., the managing partner at Strom Law Firm, L.L.C., has been fighting for justice since 1984.

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