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State, federal child porn investigation nabs 27

Posted October 27, 2011
Updated March 21, 2012

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— A state and federal investigation into trafficking of sexually explicit photos and videos depicting children has resulted in 27 arrests – including an active-duty Marine, a schoolteacher, a fire captain and a dance instructor – over the past two months and more are expected, North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper said Thursday.

State Bureau of Investigation agents working with the federal Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force made the arrests over the past two months as part of Operation Spyglass.

Among those arrested were seven men in Wake County on charges of second-degree exploitation of a minor: Kyle Martin Inch, 26, on 11 counts; John David Herron, 30, on 20 counts; Jean Paul Berard, 31, on four counts; Edward Joseph O’Brien, 38, on one count; Jacob Moses Korn, 24, on 10 counts; and William Johnson Blankinship, age unavailable, on 10 counts.

Daniel Lawrence Taylor, 43, was arrested on four counts of indent liberties with a minor, crimes against nature, aiding and abetting and solicitation of a minor by computer.

Other arrests include:

- Chad Thomas Evans, 40, a captain with the Lumberton Fire Department, on nine counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor in Robeson County

- Paul Stephen Pearsall, age unavailable, a school teacher in Sampson County, on three counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor in Cumberland County

- Bruce Anthony Howard, age unavailable, a dance instructor, on 10 counts of second-degree child sexual exploitation and one count of first-degree child sexual exploitation in Franklin County

- Daniel Joseph Nilsson, 32, a Marine captain, on six counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor in Pender County

Investigators also served 27 search warrants to seize computers containing hundreds of thousands of illegal photos and videos of abused children, some as young as age 3. Several other investigations are under way, with more searches and arrests expected.

Sting nabs 25 on child porn-related charges Sting nabs 25 on child porn-related charges

"These criminals are exploiting innocent children and contributing to continued misery and abuse," Cooper said. “Crackdowns like this send a strong message that trading images of child sexual abuse is a crime and will not be tolerated in North Carolina.”

Undercover investigators use technology to identify people who download and share files that contain illegal child pornography, even when the people try to remain anonymous, he said.

Investigators don't yet know if images the suspects traded involved North Carolina children.

"It is really scary," said Cary police detective Jason Ice, who was among the undercover investigators working with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. "These are the people we're trying to target and make sure they're not harming children."

In operations involving online sex predators, investigators like Ice often pose as children online.

Through ICAC, he can connect with investigators throughout the United States to share information about predators they interact with.

"We take a progressive approach to dealing with these types of people," he said.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • oleguy Oct 28, 2011

    If it is legal to set up porn sites, then why is it illegal to view them,, Just saying I dont get it, But then I dont use them either

  • btneast Oct 28, 2011

    WRAL should put some CONTACT information up where people can call and REPORT things they KNOW are happening!!!

    ....ever hear of 911? Failing that, Child Protective Services in the phone book at Social Services I believe.

  • robin616 Oct 28, 2011

    WRAL should put some CONTACT information up where people can call and REPORT things they KNOW are happening!!!

  • familyfour Oct 28, 2011

    This is why I am not a drop them off parent. I stay where my children are. I trust NO ONE with them. Period. Grandparents only!!!

  • familyfour Oct 28, 2011


  • lorid27549 Oct 27, 2011

    Firegal....click on Arrests in Operation Spyglass....it gives all the names, including Howard's.

  • Firegal Oct 27, 2011

    N&O doesnt even publish all of the names...

  • Firegal Oct 27, 2011

    So why isnt the local guy mentioned? SBI agents working with the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force arrested Bruce Anthony Howard, a dance teacher from Louisburg, this afternoon.

    Investigators tracked computer transactions to Howard’s home at 68 White Pines Mobile Home Park in Louisburg, where they executed a search warrant and seized a computer on October 12, 2011. Through examination of the computer and other aspects of the investigation, investigators determined that Howard had collected images of child sexual abuse since at least 2008. They also identified a child that Howard solicited to produce child pornography and located evidence of that crime on Howard’s computer.

    Howard was charged with 10 counts of Second Degree Child Sexual Exploitation and one count of First Degree Child Sexual Exploitation and was placed in the Franklin County Detention Center with a $300,000 secured bond. Howard had been employed as an instructor at several local dance studios.

  • mfarmer1 Oct 27, 2011

    >> "You can legally search for information on these subjects without the need to view the abuse of children. artist""

    I think that depends. If you are searching for information and they have the image on the web page, or if your using a web browser accelerator. Images can be saved to your hard drive in a temp folder the browser uses. Unless you have a program that clears all information downloaded then the image may stay there for years.

  • btneast Oct 27, 2011

    Big Brother is watching! Will we get tracking implants some day?

    ...you already do, its called a cell phone. They can also track your debit.credit card trail as well