Nipomo man convicted of possessing large cache of child porn

March 18, 2022

By KAREN VELIE

A San Luis Obispo County jury on Monday found a 53-year-old Nipomo man guilty of possession of at least 600 images of child pornography,with at least 10 of those images depicting children under the age of 12.

In June 2018, Arroyo Grande Police Detective Jim Jolly received documentation that a computer in Atascadero was sharing child pornography with other computers over the internet. Jolly’s investigation traced the computer’s internet protocol address to a business in Atascadero.

The Atascadero Police Department then obtained a search warrant and seized John Paul Russell’s computer from his place of work. Detectives found thousands of images and some videos depicting child exploitative materials and child pornography on the computer.

“Child pornography is exploitation that causes immeasurable harm to its victims when the material is created, and again each and every time it is viewed by another person,” said District Attorney Dan Dow. “Many child molesters possess child pornography, and they often use it to desensitize their targeted victims. Aggressively prosecuting these crimes will serve to both punish individual violators and to deter others from getting involved in this form of child exploitation.”

Russell is scheduled to be sentenced on April 21. He faces a maximum term of five years in jail and will have to register as a sex offender for life.


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Rodney2322

I think he should get more time in PRISON not jail


ghostpepper

Downloading that stuff onto a computer at your place of business seems wildly inappropriate and the fact that he could get 5 years could mean there are other aggravating factors not mentioned (or it could just be that that is the legal upper bounds for the charge and he is unlikely to get that much).


What annoys me are some of Dow’s comments.


(1) “..and again each and every time it is viewed by another person.” No, not true at all. Someone possessing or viewing that material has no impact on whomever was involved in the creation of that content. Unless the person knows the victims and is communicating with them or the victims otherwise find out about it.


(2) “Many child molesters possess child pornography..” Many may, but that does not mean that all people that do are active or latent child molesters. It is the same fallacy as saying that violent video games/movies make people violent because some people who have carried out violent acts also enjoy violent games/movies. It may sound like nitpicking but it is much harder to solve a problem if you do not understand the problem correctly.


It is a tough issue to talk about because it is such a sensitive area that people easily get incensed at the mere mention of it and therefore don’t bother to actually think it through. I think he should get some form of punishment for crossing a moral and legal boundary and should be evaluated in some way to see if he is really a danger to kids or not. But ultimately, public safety is much better served by making a big show of going after people who commit the crimes that took place to create this content and those that encourage or contribute to it; not those that happen to have records (images or videos) of the crime but have no other involvement.


Francesca Bolognini

Viewing this material can become an influence on someone to entertain thoughts of committing such crimes and desensitize them to the evil and damage of those crimes to the point that they engage in them. And yes, viewing by others could lead to the child depicted being recognized and attacked.


How did you miss these points when you “thought this through”? Sounds like you have been desensitized to the real, ongoing harm involved in these behaviors. Someone possessing, sharing and promoting this material, which creates a market, is already a danger to children. DUH.


shishkabob141

Following you logic…

Someone who possesses illegal drugs shouldn’t be penalized to the same degree as those who manufacture or import the drugs–even though they could distribute the drugs, or in this case child pornography. Do I have that right?


Freethebud

It does seem to fall into the realm of thought crimes or crimes for objectionable morals. Seems it should be hard to prosecute without a direct victim of this guys actions. I understand that taking dirty pictures of kids is and should be against the law Such exploitation is terrible and leaves life long scars but if you are just viewing and sharing such pictures then did you really injure anyone? Not arguing that it is a bad thing but a crime?