Federal Child Pornography Charges Against Vt. Teacher Are Dropped; No Evidence He Knew Images Were on Computer

September 1, 2012

The Republic on September 1, 2012 released the following:

“THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

BENNINGTON, Vt. — Federal child pornography charges against a former Vermont elementary school teacher have been dismissed, but his lawyer lamented that the man had already lost his job and reputation.

John Dockum, 34, had pleaded not guilty in February to state charges on five felony counts of possession of child pornography. The state dismissed its charges, allowing federal prosecutors to review the case. He was never formally indicted, and federal prosecutors filed a motion Friday to dismiss their case, according to the Bennington Banner (http://bit.ly/N5h5Es).

    A police deposition showed there’s no evidence Dockum knew he had child pornography images on his computer, which is a necessary component of criminal possession, said Dockum’s attorney, David Silver of Bennington.

He said Dockum had visited a website that placed the 17 images that led to the charges into his computer’s temporary Internet cache.

The Bennington School District fired Dockum in February. He had taught at Monument Elementary School since 2009.

Silver called the case “a tragedy,” adding that his client was a popular teacher and has lost his job and reputation.

“I don’t know how he gets that back,” he said.”

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To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Richard D. Crisman Arraigned on Federal Child Pornography Charges

September 9, 2011

The Federal Bureau of Investigation on September 8, 2011 released the following:

“Rio Rancho Man Arraigned on Federal Child Pornography Charges

ALBUQUERQUE—This morning in federal court in Albuquerque, Richard D. Crisman, 27, of Rio Rancho, New Mexico, was arraigned on a six-count indictment charging him with child pornography offenses. The indictment charges Crisman with three counts of receipt of a visual depiction of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct, and three counts of possession of a matter containing visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Crisman allegedly committed all six offenses in September 2010 in Bernalillo County, New Mexico.

The maximum penalty for a conviction on each of the receipt offenses is imprisonment for not less than five years and not more than 20 years and a lifetime of supervised release. The maximum penalty for a conviction on each of the possession offenses is up to 10 years’ imprisonment and a lifetime of supervised release. If convicted of any count, Crisman also will be required to register as a sex offender. Crisman entered a not guilty plea to the indictment during this morning’s proceedings, and was detained pending trial based on findings that he poses a danger to the community and a risk of flight.

United States Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales said that Crisman was arrested as part of Operation Predator. Operation Predator was an investigative effort by state and local law enforcement affiliates of the New Mexico Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force aimed at identifying individuals throughout New Mexico involved in the distribution, receipt, and possession of child pornography through peer-to-peer file-sharing programs. Twenty-two search warrants were executed and eight defendants were arrested in late September 2010 as a result of Operation Predator.

Crisman was arrested in September 2010 on state charges filed by the District Attorney’s Office for the 13th Judicial District of the State of New Mexico, Sandoval County. The federal indictment charging Crisman was filed under seal on August 23, 2011, and was unsealed on September 7, 2011 after Crisman was arrested on the federal charges.

The case against Crisman was investigated by the Rio Rancho Police Department, the New Mexico State Police, U.S. Homeland Security Investigations, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the District Attorney’s Office for the 13th Judicial District. The case, which is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Charlyn E. Rees, was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit http://www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

The case also was brought as part of the New Mexico Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force whose mission it is to locate, track, and capture Internet child sexual predators and Internet child pornographers in New Mexico. There are 61 federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies associated with the Task Force, which is funded by a grant administered by the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office. Anyone with information relating to suspected child predators and suspected child abuse is encouraged to contact federal or local law enforcement.

Charges in indictments are only accusations. All criminal defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.”

To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Crimes Watch Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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