Computer Crime Research Center


Child porn suspect charged

Date: February 05, 2005
Source: Associated Press

A county magistrate in Indiana on Wednesday ordered Stephen D. Puckett, 58, of Crawfordsville, Ind., to be held in jail on $100,000 bond. Puckett, who was arrested after a tip from Wichita police, was charged with three counts of child exploitation, 45 counts of possession of child pornography and one count of possession of a controlled substance.

Purdue police last week arrested Puckett, a lab services supervisor in the school's biology department, after Wichita police officers said they had received child pornography images via the Internet from a computer on Purdue's campus.

According to court documents, an undercover Wichita police officer posed as a woman and communicated with Puckett in an Internet chat room.

In addition to the images, prosecutors accused Puckett of sending sexually explicit messages concerning child molestation and child pornography. University officials said they traced the messages to Puckett's computer.

Brian Zink, a university spokesman, said Puckett, a Purdue employee since 1982, was suspended without pay. A final determination on his employment is expected by Thursday.

Deputy prosecutor Tim Kern said he requested the high bond amount because Puckett is a danger to the public.

"That's a lot of children who were being and are continuing to be harmed by people having these images of them," Kern said.

If convicted of the most serious charges, Puckett could face two to eight years in prison.

Lt. Roy Mitchell of the Wichita/Sedgwick County Exploited and Missing Child Unit said the investigation began last week when Detective Shawn Bostick was in an Internet chat room pretending to be a woman.

After exchanging a few messages with Bostick, Mitchell said, the man from Indiana sent him some child pornography. Mitchell said Wichita police then contacted Purdue police, who handled the rest of the investigation.

"That's about as clean as it gets," he said of the investigation.

Bostick, who has been trained in the field of Internet sex crime investigations, works online in an undercover capacity in his spare time, Mitchell said. He said two other Exploited and Missing Child Unit detectives work full-time on computer crime investigations.

Add comment  Email to a Friend

Discussion is closed - view comments archieve
2005-02-17 02:10:22 - george has some george
Total 1 comments
Copyright © 2001-2013 Computer Crime Research Center
CCRC logo