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Child Pornography

Destin Man Accused of Uploading Child Porn to YouTube

A Destin man has been arrested after he allegedly uploaded child pornography on YouTube, according to Okaloosa County sheriff’s deputies.

The 23-year-old man was arrested January 3 after an investigation lead to an IP address tracing back to a YouTube account the man was using, reports say.

Deputies report after the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a report in reference to child pornography being possessed, manufactured and/or distributed a search warrant was issued to search a location on the 4300 block of Legendary Drive in Destin.

Investigators allegedly found a phone number and email tied to the YouTube account, reports say.

Reports say the account was accessed many times between February 2019 and March 2019 from the man’s residence.

The man was arrested for a non-related warrant out of Okaloosa County where during the interview he confirmed that both the phone number and email connected to the IP address belonged to him and that he did have a YouTube account, deputies say.

He was arrested and taken to Okaloosa County Jail where he is charged with possession of child pornography.

Our Florida Child Pornography Defense Attorneys know that law enforcement are doing more than ever to combat child pornography. Police have enlisted the help of internet service providers, manufacturers of software, cloud computing storage providers, and others in the industry to assist them in their battle to catch anyone possessing child porn. Police departments are now automatically notified when a person is believed to have child pornography on their computer.  

How do they know? Companies who host or store images and videos, such as Microsoft, Google or Dropbox, and in this case YouTube, compare the images or videos they are hosting and storing to a database of known child pornography. The known child porn has a unique digital footprint, which enables them to use it in comparison to the stored or hosted images and videos. When they come across a user who they suspect is in possession of child pornography, they will report this person to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), as this case shows. The agency, funded in part by the US Department of Justice, receives anywhere from 15,000 to 25,000 reports per week.

NCMEC is an organization that works in conjunction with the Child Victim Identification Program (CVIP). The NCMEC serves as the central information repository in the United States relating to child victims depicted in sexually exploitative images and videos.  NCMEC has analyzed well over 120 million child pornography videos and images that it has cataloged and also used a computer algorithm to analyze the media and look for its “digital fingerprints.” That is how officials use this information to track the image through what is called hash values. These values, or “digital fingerprints,” are then added to a database. 

Once NCMEC has any information that macthes up with a suspicion of child pornography, they will alert federal or local law enforcement of the information that they have, and that agency will either investigate it themselves or pass it on to a different agency. For example, federal agencies may pass the case on to local authorities. 

The law enforcement agency will then serve search warrants on Internet Service Providers (ISPs) such as AT&T or Comcast, to identify who the internet service account is registered to. They could find that they are investigating a single residence with a single occupant who is the customer of the ISP, or they may be investigating a residence with many occupants, and many different online electronic devices. In most cases, the agency will use the information they obtain from the ISP search warrant to seek another search warrant for the residence where they believe the images or videos are being accessed. 

Our Florida Child Pornography Possesion Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton want to make it clear that if a judge issues a search warrant, the police can enter your home without your permission, and search for computers and electronic devices that could hold child pornography. They will seize these devices and turn them over to computer forensic experts, who will pick them apart for any evidence of child pornography. With that said, if you think you are even suspected of child pornography, you should immediately seek a consultation with us to learn how we can safeguard your rights. These charges are quite severe and you could be looking at very serious consequences. We urge you to act fast and get the legal help you need secured right away. 

Fri Jan 31, 9:18pm

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