I think it's kiddie porn, now what do I do? DON'T GET ARRESTED!

Recently, radio DJ and local agent provocateur, Thaddeus Matthews found out that when it comes to kiddie porn, helping isn't a good thing. So what should you do if you think you have located kiddie porn. Let first look at the Thaddeus Matthews case to see what not to do.

In November 2012 the Memphis Police Department was working to track down the source of a pornographic image of an adult engaged in a sex act with a toddler that had gone viral throughout the city. Police did not know the identity of either the child or the adult depicted in the photograph, but the Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong made identifying and locating the child — who he guessed to be about two or three years old — the department's top priority. Armstrong encouraged anyone who received the photo to delete it, then to contact the Memphis Police Department with information about the source of the image or the identity of those depicted in it.

Matthews, who also is a blogger, was arrested after posting on his website a photo of an adult engaged in a sex act with a small child. He told news media organizations that he posted the image — which had been widely disseminated on the Internet — in an effort to identify and help the child victim. Thaddeus Matthews was then arrested on charges of aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor, especially aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor and exploitation of a minor. His case is still pending and may be investigated by the Federal Prosecutors. So much for trying to help. Now he faces serious felony charges that carry jail time and life-time registration on the Sex Offenders Registry.

SO, WHAT SHOULD YOU DO? First a quick lesson on what not to do: 1) Don't copy it, 2) Don't mail it, 3) Don't download it, $) don't forward it, 5) don't store it, 6) don't link to it, etc.

Possessing it is as illegal as disseminating it. Write down the URL (the web address), and contact your local police department. Most departments have either a person or a unit assigned to the reports of kiddie porn. For example, Memphis Police have the Memphis Internet Crimes Against Children Unit which is still trying to uncover the source of the original photo in this example.

DON'T GET IN TROUBLE TRYING TO HELP. LEAVE THE INVESTIGATION UP TO THE LOCAL POLICE. IF THEY CAN'T HANDLE IT, THEY WILL FORWARD IT ON TO THE FBI. YOU CAN REPORT IT ANONYMOUSLY.

Categories: Sex Crimes
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