Professors & Staff Arrested for Trading in Child Rape
Lori Handrahan –
When a University of North Dakota professor was arrested on child pornography charges, The Dakota Student asked “We can’t help but wonder if this type of thing is common in other schools around the nation?” The answer is yes. A concerning number professors and staff have been arrested for trading in brutal child sex abuse, including of infants. From University of Virginia’s Assistant Dean, Michael Morris downloading infant anal rape to Kirk Nesset, professor at Allegheny College with over 500,000 videos/images including folders called “kidsfuck,” too many professors and staff are involved in child sex trafficking.
For the past few years I have been monitoring reports of professors and staff arrested for trading in child rape and torture; aka child pornography. My research, which is far from comprehensive, details 75 professors and staff arrested on child rape and torture, aka child porn, charges. Both the volume and type of crime should raise alarm bells. Yet academic institutions remain silent. Protect the institution, not the children, appears to be the rallying cry at far too many higher education institutions.
What Can You Do?
Do you want your children taught by a professor who masturbates to the rape and torture of very small children? Are you comfortable knowing tuition fees help fund these crimes because too many universities and colleges refuse to install software that could report to law enforcement attempts to trade in child pornography by their professors and staff?
Demand action. Request a meeting with the provost or president of the educational institution in your community, the university or college you attended, or the institution where your children are enrolled. Print out this article. Bring it to the meeting and ask if the educational institution has installed software, like NetClean, that reports to law enforcement attempts on their network to trafficked in children. If not, why not?
As you read these accounts of arrests, please remember these are real children being raped and tortured in these videos and images. American children. Perhaps, even a child you know and have no idea how that child is suffering. It might even be your own child.
Every time an image or video is shared, that child is trafficked again.
Professors, Deans and Presidents
Mark Ranzenberger, a 61 year old professor of journalism at Central Michigan University (CMU), was arrested and charged, 20 May 2016, and pleaded guilty, 27 September 2016, to one federal count of child pornography possession and four (of which three were dropped in a plea deal) state counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct for repeatedly raping a girl younger than 13 over a 7 year period.
On 19 January 2017, Ranzenberger was sentenced in federal court to 14 years in prison followed by 5 years of supervised release. On 26 January 2017, he was sentenced to 14 to 45 years in prison in Michigan State’s Isabella County Court to be served concurrently with his federal sentencing. He remained in custody pending sentencing.
Ranzenberger was caught when he mistakenly showed child pornography to his students. A student reported the crime, triggering university police to open an investigation. At the time of his arrest, Ranzenberger was in possession of over 1,000 images/videos of child sex abuse, including the rape of infants. He also had a “grooming” document instructing pedophiles how to manipulate children from birth to age 11 “to participate in sexual acts.”
The girl whom Ranzenberger raped for years, testified at his sentencing calling him a “psychopath, monster.” She said “He’s smooth, charming, and manipulative… He was able to hide the monster he was in every word he spoke. His coworkers and family didn’t know he was a child molester.” The victim described Ranzenberger as “a slug of man” and “a pathological liar.” Ranzenberger’s blogsite and Twitter accounts are still live.
was arrested, 12 September 2016, for the second time on child pornography charges. His second arrest was for four new counts of child pornography possession. DeZutter was first arrested, 5 February 2015, and charged with ten possession and one distribution child pornography counts.
Despite the volume and type of child rape and torture, including infant rape, DeZutter was trading in he was sentenced, 16 September 2015, to only 4 months in jail with five years probation. He was free on conditional release, without monetary surety, until his sentencing.
DeZutter told investigators he had been trading in child sex abuse images/videos since 1996. Investigators said his University of Minnesota laptop was “full” of child sex abuse files. Investigators said DeZutter told them, upon his arrest, “You are not going find a lot of this at home. I do most of this at the office.” The university, originally, barred DeZutter from campus and temporarily relieved him of his teaching duties.
Justin Carroll, 67 year old Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and interim athletic director at Washington University, was indicted, 30 January 2017, on one federal charge of access with intent to view child pornography.
Carroll was trading in the rape and torture of boys between three and six years. He had videos of children as young as three years old forced to handle adult erect penises and subjected to anal rape. One video was called “boybending,”
a how-to guide for child sex abuse and grooming, “the art of remotely directing a boy on webcam, through typing text and displaying videos, to achieve a desired pose or behavior.” Carroll submitted his resignation after his arrest. He had been at the university for 36 years.
Christopher Haas, a 60 year old history professor at Villanova University, was found dead, of suicide, on 28 January 2017, two day prior to starting a 20 month prison sentence with ten years of supervised release for child pornography charges. Haas was arrested, March 2016, and charged with 415 child sexual exploitation related charges. Delaware County charges were dropped after federal sentencing.
Haas was caught, by university IT staff, using a Villanova computer to search for child rape. At the time of his arrest he had more than 400 images of child sexual exploitation on his computer. Haas had been under Homeland Security investigation in 2012 for child pornography crimes on his home computer. It is not clear why he was not arrested in 2012.
In September 2016, Haas pleaded guilty to one count of accessing the internet with the intent to view child-exploitation images and was sentenced in December 2016. Upon Haas’ arrest Villanova released the following statement: “The university is horrified by the behavior of this individual and has relieved the faculty member of his teaching duties. He is not permitted to return to campus. The university has an unwavering commitment to a safe campus for all community members, and illegal, offensive and dangerous behaviors will not be tolerated.”
Holt Parker, a 59 year old classics professor at the University of Cincinnati, was arrested, 15 March 2016, on one count of distribution and receipt of child pornography as well as destruction or removal of property to prevent seizure. He pleaded guilty, 29 August 2016, to one count of possession of child pornography and was free on bail pending sentencing. On 26 January 2017, he was sentenced to four years in prison followed by 15 years of supervised release.
Parker told investigators he traded child rape almost “every day” for the past five or six years. He used the email “firstname.lastname@example.org” to trade in child pornography. Parker “bragged about having sex with an 8-year-old girl” and responded to the rape of a 4 year old child with “love that,” “show me,” “please!” He collected “thousands” of images/videos of child rape and torture including of an infant. Parker’s Ph.D. is from Yale. He published on sexuality, slavery and sadism.
Charles Jones, a 59 year old professor at Union College, was arrested, 22 January 2017, on child pornography charges. Jones was charged with
distribution and possession of child pornography. Police were notified when child sex abuse images were found on a college printer, in 2014, that Jones used. Hundreds of images of child sex abuse were located on Jones’ computer. At the time of this writing, Jones remained in custody pending sentencing.
Mark Manion, a 51 year old philosophy professor who taught ethics at Drexel University, was arrested, 28 October 2010, on child porn charges. He pleaded guilty, 13 January 2010, to possession of child pornography and criminal use of a communication facility, or computer. Manion was caught by information technology staff when he asked IT staff to remove a virus on his computer. At the time of his arrest, he had over 800 child sex abuse images. Manion had made hundreds of visits to child-porn sites. Manion was sentenced to seven years probation and no jail time. He is a registered sex offender.
Michael Wilson, a 46 year old professor at the College of William and Mary,
Wilson is the second William and Mary professor arrested on child sex abuse charges.
Justin Bradley May, a 34 year old economics professor at William and Mary,
was arrested, July 2010, on child pornography production. He pleaded guilty on 18 October 2010 and was sentenced, 3 February 2011, to 15 years in jail followed by 10 years of supervised release. The prosecuting attorney said, “It is shocking that a college professor manipulated a young girl for his own sexual gratification. This case is a wake-up call to parents and kids alike that the face of evil is often the ordinary and the familiar, including people in positions of trust.” He was producing child pornography on his college computer.
Adam Cobb, a 48 year old professor and director of the Mahan Advanced
Research Project at Naval War College, was arrested, 3 April 2015, on child porn distribution charges. He pleaded guilty, 24 February 2015, and was sentenced, 13 February 2017, to five years in jail followed by 10 years of supervised release. Cobb was caught when he uploaded child sex abuse images to Tumblr. Cobb has been in custody since December of 2015, when he violated terms of his pre-trial release and the court revoked his $1,000,000 surety bond release.
Robert Berardo, a 56 year adjunct professor at Middlesex County College,
Raritan Valley College and formerly at Monmouth University and girls’ softball coach, was arrested, September 2016, and charged with one count each of endangering a child due to distribution possession and intent to distribute child pornography. He was held on $110,000 bail.
J. Martin Favor, a 49 year old English professor and former chair of the African-American Studies Department at Dartmouth College, was arrested, 3 September 2015, on five felony child pornography charges. All five state charges were dropped in a deal when Favor pleaded guilty, 31 March 2016, to one federal count child pornography possession.
Upon his arrest he had more than 500 videos and 300 images of child rape, including of infants and toddlers. His user name on Tumblr, where he was trading in child rape, was “lustyjourney.” He had been trading in child rape for 15 years.
Despite his arrest for crimes against children, Dartmouth University retained Favor on faculty and continued to pay him until his July 2016 sentencing. He was prohibited from campus. On 11 July 2016 Martin was sentenced to five and half years in jail and six/seven years of supervised release.
Walter Korte, a 72 year old film professor at the University of Virginia, was arrested, 2 August 2016, and charged, by the university’s police department, with two counts of child pornography possession. He was indicted, 5 December 2016, to two counts of child porn possession. Korte’s sentencing is currently set for May 2017. Korte is, at least, the second recent child porn arrest of a UVA professor. UVA’s Assistant Dean, Michael Morris, was arrested in 2013 on similar charges.
Michael Morris, a 50 year old Assistant Dean at University of Virginia (UVA) and father of two teenage daughters, was arrested and charged, 6 November 2013, on child porn charges. Morris was an “ultimate” member of Gigatribe.
Gigatribe is a peer-to-peer (P2P) program he used to trade PTHC “pre-teen hard core” brutal torture of children under 12 years old. His on-line name was “funshooter2006.” At the time of his arrest, he was caught with 4,000 images/videos of child sex abuse including the abuse of toddlers.
He was indicted on two counts of distributing or receiving child porn and one count of possessing child porn. He pleaded guilty to all three charges on 21 April 2014 and was sentenced, 14 July 2014, to 8.8 years in federal jail and 20 years supervised release.
For the past five years Morris posed as a teenage boy or girl, and got 14 to 16 year old girls to perform sex acts for him live-streamed via web cameras. He had been trading in child sex rape and torture for 15 years.
In the few months he was under investigation, he accessed, more than 192 times, child sex abuse from his home and UVA computer. UVA suspended Morris pending investigation. He later resigned.
charged with two federal counts of receipt/attempted receipt and one count of child pornography possession. He was also charged, in Michigan district court, with three counts of criminal sexual conduct with a six year old child. He has been held without bail pending sentencing. At the time of his arrest, Nasser was in possession of at least 37,000 images/videos of child sex abuse.
More than 60 women and/or girls have come forward with allegations of sexually assault by Nassar and more than 20 women are currently suing Nassar. Allegations include reports that a Michigan State University (MSU) employee ignored reports of sexual abuse against Nasser made in the 1990s and attempted to prevent victims from coming forward. MSU is now the subject of at least three lawsuits by Nassar’s victims. A lawyer for the victims has said that Michigan State University police should not be allowed to remain as lead investigate, as they are not impartial, given the allegations of a cover-up. Michigan State University terminated Nassar’s employment and the State of Michigan revoked his medical license.
Kahler was caught by the FBI’s Operation Pacifier when they seized control of a child rape website called Playpen. He has been free on bond pending sentencing. His next court date was set for 17 January 2017. Kahler is the second SVSU professor arrested on child porn charges.
Robert Thaler, a 71 year old sociology professor at Saginaw Valley State University, was arrested and charged, June 2013, with nine counts of possession of child sexually abusive material. Students were, reportedly, shocked. He was trading in child sex abuse on his university computer.
In a deal, Thaler pleaded guilty and, in exchange for his plea, he will not serve any jail time. He was sentenced, 24 February 2014, to five years probation. Thaler had been free on $18,000 bond pending sentencing.
Massimiliano (Max) Bonamente, a 46 year old physics professor at the
University of Alabama, was arrested, 10 February 2017, and charged on two counts including the sexual abuse of a child under 12 years old. Bonamente was being held at the Madison County Detention Facility on a $60,000 bond.
Brian Meadows, a retired 76 year old professor at University of Cincinnati, was arrested, 4 November 2016, on two counts of illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material and three counts of voyeurism.
Meadows had set up a hidden camera in the locker rooms at Cincinnati Sports Club, a health club he belonged to, in order to film “children in the nude” and “using the restroom.” He is free on bond pending his next court date.
She, and her boyfriend, had been discussing molesting a five year old child. She told her boyfriend “he should allow himself to become aroused by young girls that he sees in public and that he should then report back to her.”
Simmons College had placed Azotea on paid leave.
Another UNT professor, Alan Marchard, had been arrested, by campus police, on child porn charges in 2003. Marchard had been using his university computer to trade in child rape. UNT would not comment on whether Quinn was doing the same. Marchard pleaded guilty, August 2004, to four counts of child porn possession and received six years of probation with no jail time. UNT had placed Marchard on paid leave. He later resigned. Marchard is a registered sex offender.
on 12 August 2015. His sentencing is scheduled for 1 March 2017.
Sullivan was trading in child rape, including children as young as four years old, from university networks. Emory University’s Information Technology Department assisted law enforcement in the investigation.
undercover police officer who was pretending to be a father offering his son for sex abuse. He had traveled from Michigan to Florida with the intention of raping a child. Cavalcoli had posted, at least twice, online requests to meet fathers offering their children for rape when he traveled to Indiana and Ireland. He was sentenced, 30 March 2016, to ten years in prison followed by five years of supervised release. The university placed Cavalcoli on an unpaid leave and terminated his employment upon his sentencing. Cavalcoli is the third University of Michigan employee to be arrested on child sex abuse charges. Steven Germinder, profiled under the Staff Section of this article, a finance employee at University of Michigan, was also arrested on child porn charges.
Stephen Jenson, a pediatric oncologist at University of Michigan, was arrested, December 2011, and sentenced, March 2013 to three years in federal prison on one count of child porn possession. The original four counts of possessing child sexually abusive material, brought by the state were dropped in lieu of federal charges.
Jenson left his thumb drive plugged in a computer in the Pediatric Emergency Department. A female resident found the memory stick and discovered child rape which she reported. University of Michigan’s lawyers said her “concerns” were “unfounded” and refused to contact law enforcement. Six months later the incident was “re-reported” and police were notified. Jenson continued to have access to children in the pediatric unit during the delay.
and Community Medicine Department, was arrested, 6 August 2015, for possession of hundreds of child rape files on his office computer. At the time of his arrest he had 3,233 images and 100 videos of child rape and torture including of infants and toddlers. The prosecutor said, “These images are not of a naked child frolicking in a field… really horrific acts.”
Beattie was originally charged with 10 child pornography counts at the state level. These were all dropped in lieu of a plea deal, when Beattie pleaded guilty to federal charges of one count of possession and one count of distribution. He was sentenced, July 2016, to 12 years in prison and ten years of supervised release. Upon his arrest, the university placed Beattie on paid leave and later terminated his employment. He is the third UND employee arrested on child pornography charges. The arrest of Paul Bradley Meagher, a campus police officer, is listed in the Staff Section of this article.
Eric Hewitt Basile, a 37 year old aviation professor at University of North
Dakota, was arrested, 7 September 2016, and charged with eight felony child porn charges. He was arrested by university police and had been using his university computer to trade in the rape of children between the ages of one and three years old. State charges were dropped, in lieu of one federal count of child porn receipt and distribution and three counts of child pornography possession. Basile’s trial is currently set for April 2017.
Richard Kelly, a 56 year old father of a two year old and a pediatric endocrinologist at Boston Children’s Hospital and pediatrics instructor at Harvard Medical School, was arrested, 13 September 2012, on child porn charges. He pleaded guilty, November 2013, to three charges of receiving
and possessing child pornography and was sentenced, 12 March 2014, to six and half years in federal prison followed by five and half years of supervised release.
Kelly had been the Medical Director at Phillips Academy for 19 years before suddenly resigning. He was receiving child sex abuse DVDs at Phillips Academy. Kelly possessed over 100 DVDs of child sex abuse at the time of his arrest.
Christopher Pelloski, a 42 year old Director of Pediatric Radiation Oncology Program at Ohio State University and father of 5 year old twins, was arrested, 16 July 2013, on child pornography charges. He pleaded guilty, 15 November 2013 and was sentenced, 11 July 2014, to only one year in prison and five years of supervised release. He is a registered sex offender. Pelloski’s medical license was revoked in Ohio. He was trading in child rape on his university computer, including of a 7 year old girl forced to perform sex acts and a “girl no older than 12 being anally raped by an adult man.” Pelloski had been trading in child rape and torture for six years.
David H. Scanlan, a 38 year old pediatric oncologist fellow at Penn State Hershey’s Children’s Hospital, was investigated, July 2011, on child rape and torture distribution. In a deal, Scanlan pleaded guilty, 12 February 2014, to child porn distribution charges. He was sentenced, 2 September 2014, to five years in federal prison followed by 20 years supervised released. Police recovered two laptops and seven external hard drives with “a lot of child pornography images.” State Police said, “When I say a lot, we’re talking a very substantial amount” with children as young as ten years old. Scanlan surrendered his medical license. He had been free, pending sentencing, under electronic monitoring in his Virginia home.
15 October 2014, on 50 child pornography charges. His court date was set for 3 August 2015, on 51 child porn counts which included children as young as five years old. He had been director of the Tulane University Shakespeare Festival from 2001 to 2009.
Elliott McGinnies, 94 year old emeritus psychology professor at American University was charged, 9 October 2015, for sex crimes against children. McGinnies was arrested in 1986 for sexual assault of a nine year old girl. He never spent a day in jail. Charges keep getting dropped by the prosecution. In 1990, American University’s president, Richard Berendzen called day cares, for over a year, seeking sex with children. He contacted Susan Eva Allen, a mother operating a day care whose husband was a detective with Fairfax County Police Department. Allen recorded more than 30 hours of calls.
Berendzen asked if “she and her husband included their children in sex.” He told her he masturbated while talking with her and offered to procure a child for her to use as a “sex slave.” He “described going to sex slave auctions in Chicago and Detroit,” bragged about his abuse of children, his child porn collection, a four year old girl “sex slave” and strapping his wife to a wheel. Berendzen’s calls to Susan Allen followed “a pattern.” Investigators “had been trying to identify the caller on the tape for a year.” From January to April 1990, alone, he called 10–15 other local day cares. He also admitted to calling “as many as 15 women.” Media reports noted other witnesses, including a retired South Carolina police officer, but no one, except for Susan Allen, came forward. The Washington Post reported at the time “charges were not brought in a second case.” Berendzen never spent a day in jail. He remained a professor at American University.
child pornography possession. On 24 July 2015, he pleaded guilty to all 10 counts and was sentenced to 5 years in jail with 3 years and 8 months suspended followed by five years of supervised release. He is listed as a sex offender.
More had been trading in child sex abuse from university computers.
George Mason, apparently, terminated upon his arrest He taught Introduction to The Intelligence Community.
was trading in child rape on campus and was arrested by campus police. He was placed on paid leave and banned from campus. Two weeks later he resigned. After his home was searched, he was charged with a total of 301 felony child porn charges.
Gary Spring, a 61 year old professor and Chair of the Civil Engineering
Department at Merrimack College, was arrested, 19 September 2014, and charged with one count child porn possession. On 10 September 2015, he pleaded guilty to using his college computer to trade in child pornography. He was sentenced, January 2016, to two years in prison and five years of supervised release. Merrimack terminated Spring’s employment within days of his arrest. He had been free on $30,000 bail pending sentencing. Spring had been using his university and home
computers to trade in child sex abuse. During a 16 day period he accessed at least 300 images of child rape. He was caught when Merrimack information technology (IT) staff notified campus security of Spring’s crimes on campus. In addition to his role as a professor, Spring was an administrator for a residential children’s summer camp at Merrimack College.
Christopher Haynes, a 64 year old retired geography professor at Humboldt State University, was arrested, 29 August 2014, and charged with four child pornography counts. He was sentenced, 24 February 2015, to 90 days in jail and three years probation.
Haynes pleaded guilty to one count of possessing child pornography. The other three charges were dismissed. Upon his arrest, Haynes possessed “thousands” of child sex abuse images/videos. He was caught when a local web-hosting company noticed child porn on their servers and contacted Homeland Security. His bail was set at $100,000 which he posted within hours and was free pending sentencing.
William Merrill, a 58 year old professor who specialized in internet censorship at Central Michigan University, was arrested, November 2012, and charged with four felony counts including possession of sexually abusive material, distributing/promoting child sexually abusive activity and using a computer to commit a crime. Merrill pleaded guilty to one count of
receiving child porn and prosecutors dropped the other charges. He was sentenced, 24 July 2013, to 5.8 years in jail. Upon his arrest, investigators found more than 6,000 images/videos of child sex abuse on Merrill’s university computer depicting extreme violence against children. In total, at home and work, Merrill had “more than 100,000 images and 1,600 videos involving bondage, bestiality and children in noticeable anguish.” Merrill was caught when university information technology staff noticed a large data download and triggered an investigation.
Micah Maurio, a 28 year old part-time music professor at the University of Southern Maine (USM), was arrested, 5 December 2014, and charged with dissemination of sexually explicit material of someone under the age of 12.
USM suspended Maurio, without pay, “pending a decision on his continued employment with the University of Southern Maine.” Upon his arrest he had “hundreds of images of child pornography.” Maurio was released on personal recognizance and was free pending sentencing. It is not clear what Maurio was sentenced to as the State of Maine has not released these public court records. Maurio is currently a registered sex offender.
There have been other reports of child sex abuse by University of Maine professors. In 2001, Senior Child Protection staffer Cynthia Wellman claimed University of Maine professors were sexually abusing children, along with Child Protection Staff, on campus. The State of Maine has refused to open a criminal investigation.
counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor and four felony counts of third-degree sexual exploitation of a minor. Peppers was sentenced, 2 March 2016, to 3 years probation. He was free pending sentencing on $60,000 surety bond. Peppers was trading in the rape and torture, PTHC, of children as young as eight years old. Peppers is listed as sex offender.
Robert Joel Rice, a 58 year old war game developer at Army War College, was charged, April 2013, with 130 child porn counts. After many delays, Rice was sentenced, 28 December 2016, to 12 years in federal prison, and 10 years of supervised released, concurrent with a four year prison sentence from a
military court-martial in October 2016. The Army War College continued to employ Rice and allowed him supervised access to Army computers pending sentencing. He was free on bail pending sentencing. At the time of his arrest, Rice had more than 30,000 images/videos of child sex abuse. His wife had discovered these and notified police.
Kirk Nesset, a 57 year old creative writing professor at Allegheny College
was arrested and charged, 1 October 2014 with one count each of child porn distribution, receipt and possession.
Upon his arrest he had over 500,000 videos/images of child sex abuse and thirty folders with titles like “kidsfuck.” He was indicted, 14 October 2014, on all three counts. Nesset remained free on $10,000 bond pending sentencing. On 6 April 2015 he was scheduled to plea guilty and is currently serving 76 months, just over six years, in prison. He was caught by an undercover federal agent and
Nesset resigned from Allegheny College, 2 October 2014. Allegheny College cancelled all classes and offered grief counseling.
Nesset is being sued by eight of the victims, depicted in the child rape he traded.
Travis Brown, a 45 year old assistant professor of graphic design at the University of Arkansas, was sentenced, 14 October 2014, to five years in jail on child porn charges. He was arrested 6 February 2014 and charged with four counts of receipt of child pornography and one count of possession. Brown pleaded guilty to one count of receipt of child porn in exchange for all other charges dropped.
Upon his arrest investigators found some 629 images of children, ages 10–12 years old, being sexually abused. The university terminated his employment on 10 February 2014. Brown’s investigation was triggered by a “tip” to the state police. Pending his sentencing, Brown was under house arrest, $5,000 signature bond, and his father’s custody.
Gary Farlow, a physics professor at Wright State University, was arrested and charged, 25 September 2014, with one count of child porn possession. On 22 December 2014, he pleaded guilty. Farlow was sentenced, 30 March 2015, to ten years supervised release. He was free on personal recognizance pending
sentencing. Farlow possessed in excess of 400 images of child sex abuse. Information technology staff discovered Farlow’s crimes on his university computer. Farlow was placed on paid suspension. He has not been employed with Wright State, since 2015, according to his LinkedIn profile. He is listed as a sex offender.
James Uphoff, a 76 year old retired early childhood education professor also from Wright State University, was arrested, August 2013, on child porn charges. In October 2013, Uphoff pleaded guilty to one count of child porn possession and was sentenced, 10 September 2014, to 1.2 years in federal prison. He had been trading in child sex abuse for at least a decade. While he was out on bail, pending sentencing, he was caught, again, with child porn. No new charges were brought.
Upon his first arrest, investigators found 500 images and two videos of child sex abuse, including children in bondage, on Uphoff’s computers.
Uphoff was caught when he left child sex abuse images on a university printer/copier which was discovered and reported to university police. This triggered a search of Uphoff’s university computer and his home. Uphoff had cultivated a reputation as a leading expert on early childhood education. He also volunteered for the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Montgomery County Juvenile Court and served as Ohio’s Education Association Union President and president of the Oakwood School Board.
three counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor and one count third-degree child exploitation. Pokryfka had been trading in child sex abuse images/videos of children between the ages of 5 and 10 years old. He was caught when he sent an undercover Homeland Security agent child sex abuse images. Originally held on $100,000 bond, he was indicated on 13 August 2013 on two counts of distribution and possession of child pornography. In a deal, Pokryfka pleaded guilty to one count of child porn possession on 24 November 2014.
Frank Lombard, 43 year old Associate Director of Duke University’s Center for Health Policy, was arrested, 24 June 2009, and charged on child sex abuse related charges. On 17 December 2009 he pleaded guilty to sexual exploitation of a minor and was sentenced, 29 March 2010, to just over 27 years in federal prison.
Lombard had been drugging, raping and offering for rape his five year adopted son since the child was an infant. He also live-streamed the infant rape. An informant told investigators he witnessed “Lombard molesting an African-American child on four occasions over an Internet video chat.” Lombard had adopted two African-American children that he sexually abused. His internet profile “stated he was interested in “perv fam fun.” Lombard was caught when he invited Washington DC undercover Detective Timothy Palchak to fly to North Carolina and “have sex with” his 5 year old adopted son. Lombard told the undercover investigator that “he had himself molested his child, whom he adopted as an infant, and that he had allowed others to molest his child.” He said “the abuse of the child was easier when the child was too young to talk or know what was happening” and “he drugged the child with Benadryl during the molestation.” Upon his arrest, Duke University placed Lombard on unpaid leave and terminated his employment in July 2009. Lombard had been employed at Duke since 1999. Both children were taken into protective custody.
Lawrence Scott Ward, 63 year old now former professor emeritus and Chair of the Marketing Department at Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania, was arrested, 27 August 2006, for child porn production and distribution.
On 17 May 2007, Ward pleaded guilty, in Virginia, to producing child pornography for importation into the US and was sentenced to fifteen years in prison. On 17 November 2008, in Pennsylvania, Ward pleaded guilty to four counts of child pornography and sexual misconduct and one count of making false statements to a federal official and was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Ward was “an esteemed Ivy League professor,” wealthy Fortune 500 consultant and founder of a nonprofit youth outreach program for at-risk youths. He was earning “five-figure paychecks for as little as two days’ work,” drove expensive cars and had homes in Hawaii and Cape Cod. He had been abusing children for decades before he was caught, and finally imprisoned, by a US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Inspector at Dulles International Airport. In 1993 Ward had been charged with child sex abuse including “molesting a 13-year-old there as often as 100 times” but after two highly publicized trials, he was only given probation. The University of Pennsylvania allowed him to remain employed as a professor and he continued to sexually abuse children until his 2006 arrest.
Antonio Lasaga, 52 year old geology professor at Yale University, was arrested, 19 December 1998, on charges of sexual assault and child porn possession. He remained free on $50,000 bond until his sentencing, on 15 February 2002, to 15 years in federal prison for two child pornography charges and later sentenced to a concurrent 20 years in state prison for child sex abuse charges.
Among these were videos of Lasaga repeatedly raping a 7 year old boy, often on Yale’s campus.
In 1991 Lasaga volunteered with New Haven, Connecticut’s Board of Education to mentor disadvantaged youth. He sexually abused the child he “mentored” and produced child porn of the abuse over a five year period.
Prior to this arrest, there were at least four reports of Lasaga molesting young children at swimming pools. In 1981, when Lasaga was a professor at Pennsylvania State University (Penn State), he had been charged by Penn State College police with inappropriately touching two boys, 9 and 11 years old at a local pool. The charges were dropped. Shortly after this incident Lasaga left his position as a professor at Penn State, where he had been since 1977, and moved to Yale University’s Department of Geology and Geophysics.
In 1986 Lasaga was accused of touching children at a YMCA pool in Hamden, Connecticut. Five years later, at the same pool, another parent complained Lasaga had molested her son. On 23 October 1998, a Yale graduate student notified Yale staff that Lasaga was downloading child sex abuse images/videos on Yale computers. Yale campus police were notified and they, in turn, contacted the FBI. A search warrant was issued and Lasaga’s child sex abuse collection was seized. Despite his crimes, Yale University retained Lasaga, apparently on full salary, for nearly three years after his 1998 arrest until March 2001 when Lasaga’s tenure was finally revoked and his employment at Yale was terminated.
Yaron Segal, now deceased, was a 30 year old post-doctoral researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), when he was arrested, 28 March 2012, and charged with two charges of traveling to engage in sex with minors and one charge of using the mail to persuade, induce, entice and coerce a minor to have sex. Segal was being held without bail awaiting sentencing when he was found dead, of an apparent suicide, in prison on 13 April 2012. Subsequently, all charges were dropped.
Segal had met, in an on-line chat room, a mother offering her 12 and 16 year old daughters for sex. The mother was an undercover agent.
Segal sent the undercover agent links to “a strap-on dildo and vibrator and indicated the children he wanted to buy them for.” In a phone conversation with “the mother” Segal said he was bringing “a dildo, small vibrator for the youngest child.” Department of Homeland Security agents arrested Segal when he landed in Colorado thinking he was meeting the mother who had offered her children for sex abuse.
Segal received his Ph.D. from Yale University in applied physics in 2011. MIT Assistant Professor Tonio Buonassisi said, to MIT’s News Office, Segal was “well-respected among his peers as a brilliant, creative, and dedicated scientist.”
Taj Mahon-Haft, a 34 year old assistant professor in criminal justice at Radford University, was arrested twice in March 2013 on child porn related charges. He used his university computer to trade in child sex abuse images/videos.
Mahon-Haft pleaded guilty to 50 counts of child pornography possession and, in a deal, another 50 counts of child porn possession, nine counts of production of child porn and one count of assaulting a police officer were dropped. He was sentenced, 19 December 2013, to 100 years in prison with 85 years suspended resulting in a 15 years prison sentence and is now a registered sex offender. He had been released on $10,000 bond after his first two arrests but with his third arrest he was held without bond. Mahon-Haft had continued to download child porn while he was on bond for the pending the other charges. He had been first arrested for drug possession. Investigators had seized his home computer during the drug investigation and discovered some 10,000 child sex abuse images/videos, including of his own ten year son who lives in Washington State with Mahon-Haft’s former wife and the child’s mother. Mahon-Haft was engaged to an assistant professor of photography at Radford University, Leah Gose, at the time of his arrest. She has since left Radford University and is now a professor at Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University. Mahon-Haft was an instructor at Washington State University (WSU) before joining Radford University.
Neil Mason Williams, a 60 year old University of Kentucky professor who was Associate Director of the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, was arrested, 5 March 2014, and charged with child possession. He pleaded guilty and was
sentenced, 11 March 2015, to more than five years in federal prison. Williams was trading in child sex abuse on his university computer. He had downloaded “thousands” of child sex abuse images/videos. Williams had been employed with the university since 1987. Upon his arrest, the university suspended him with pay. Williams, and his wife Deborah who also works at the University of Kentucky, had been honored by Mississippi State University Alumni Association. Williams had been released to the custody of his wife pending trial.
Donald Ratcliff, a 61 year old Christian education professor who specialized in child psychology at Wheaton College, was arrested, 1 March 2012, and pleaded guilty, 5 August 2013, to one count of child pornography. An additional nine felony counts, including six of aggravated child pornography, were dropped. He was sentenced, 26 February 2014, to 3.5 years in prison.
Upon his arrest, Ratcliff had at least 500 images/videos of child sex abuse and rape, including images/videos of children as young as three years old. He told investigators he watched these and masturbated. He saw his criminal behavior as “moral” and claimed “research in Europe determined viewing such images was a way to avoid becoming a pedophile.” Upon his arrest he was held in custody on $750,000. His wife issued a statement saying “My children and I have felt strongly from the moment of Don’s arrest that he needs to remain in the DuPage County Jail. We have not nor will we assist in any fashion in his release.” Ratcliff’s bail was later reduced to $300,000 and he remained free on bail pending his sentencing. Upon his arrest Wheaton College placed Ratcliff on administrative leave and, two weeks later, terminated Ratcliff’s employment. Wheaton College is a Christian institution and the alma mater of evangelist Billy Graham. Ratcliff had been a professor at Wheaton since 2006 and was the author of ten books on children’s spirituality. His wife filed for divorce.
In 2016 another Wheaton College employee, Benjamin Felker, was arrested on child pornography charges. His case is detailed in the Staff Section.
level, with three counts each of child porn possession and distribution. His state charges were dismissed on 7 October 2013 and he was indicted, 25 September 2013, at the federal level on two counts of receiving and distributing child pornography. Upon his arrest, Benz possessed more than 20,000 images/videos of child sex abuse. His federal trial data is currently set for 27 April 2015. Benz has been free on $10,000 bail since his arrest. Elements of Benz’s case have been sealed by the court.
The university placed him on paid administrative leave, 27 June 2013, relieved of his teaching duties and ordered not to have contact with students. He had been developing a distance-learning course using a university IPad for the University during this paid administrative leave. Benz had been active with the Boy Scouts. Two days after his arrest, the Boys Scouts of America suspended Benz and permanently removed him from all current and future association. His membership and all of his privileges were revoked and he was placed on the Boy Scouts’ ineligible volunteer list.
At the time of his arrest, he had more than 4,000 videos/images of child rape and torture. Irwin was sentenced, June 2016, to eight years in federal prison on one count each of child porn receipt and possession followed by ten years of supervised release.
Walter Lee Williams, a 66 year old professor of Anthropology, History, and Gender Studies, at the University of Southern California, was arrested, June 2013, and charged with the sexual exploitation of children and child porn possession and production.
Williams pleaded guilty, September 2014, to one federal count of engaging in illicit sexual contact in foreign places. He was sentenced, December 2014, to five years in federal prison. Williams had also been traveling to the Philippines to engage in sex abuse of children and produce child porn. He was a member of the Buddhist Universal Association. He has published ten books and taught American Indian Studies.
Grant Smith, a 50 year old professor of material science and engineering at University of Utah, was arrested, November 2011, on child porn charges. Images included the sex abuse of girls between five and ten years old. Prosecutors said “these were explicitly sexual and extremely disturbing.”
Grant was sentenced, April 2013, to five years probation with no jail time. He was caught watching child porn in first class on a cross-country flight. The university placed him on administrative leave upon his arrest. He later resigned on 31 January 2012.
Vance Fulkerson, a 63 year old theater professor at the University of Northern Colorado, was arrested, July 2009, on charges of sexually exploiting children and unlawful sexual contact. Upon his arrest, investigators seized some 150 DVDs of child sex abuse from Fulkeron’s home. In a deal, 16 counts, including six felony counts of sexual exploitation and nine misdemeanors, were dropped. Fulkerson was sentenced, March 2010, to four years in prison.
Fulkerson had hidden a camera in his bathroom, which a former student discovered and reported. He possessed child sex abuse images of boys as young as five years old.
Students and alumni “expressed outrage when Fulkerson received only a four-year prison sentence. He faced a maximum of 12 years in jail.” He was released in 2013 and is a registered sex offender. Fulkerson resigned, upon his arrest, after 18 years with the university. The university had granted Fulkerson tenure despite a long history of reports by students of sexually in appropriate behavior.
Kevin Fuller, a 43 year old microbiology professor at Columbia College, was arrested, 19 November 2009, on charges of child porn possession and distribution which included the violent abuse of infants.
Fuller pleaded guilty and was sentenced, 9 February 2011, to six years in prison and a life-time of supervised release. He had been using his college computer and email to trade in child sex abuse.
At the time of his arrest, Fuller had more than 300 pictures of child sex abuse on his computer. Prosecutors said the images were “some of the worst images we’ve ever seen” and included “images of extreme violence.”
Fuller’s doctorate is from the University of Chicago, 1994, in molecular genetics and cell biology and he had been chair of the Columbia College Council.
Faiz Al-Khayyal, a professor at Georgia Institute of Technology, was arrested, August 2009, and convicted, 6 February 2014, on 76 counts of sexual exploitation of children and he was indicted on 201 counts of sexual exploitation of children. Despite this conviction and 201 count indictment, Al-Khayyal was only sentenced, 30 June 2014, to 10 years probation with no jail time. He is a registered sex offender.
Al-Khayyal was caught, 5 August 2009, at the airport with child sex abuse on his laptop upon his return to Georgia, after a trip to China. He had been trading in sex abuse and rape of children on his university computer.
University authorities, originally, discovered child sex abuse images/videos on his work computer and contacted Georgia’s Attorney General who notified law enforcement. His bond had been set at $250,000 which he posted in three days and was free pending sentencing. The university immediately suspended Al-Khayyal without pay.
Benjamin Levin, 63 year old “celebrated professor” at University of Toronto and former Deputy Minister of Education in Canada, was charged with 61 counts of producing and distributing child porn. Although Levin is Canadian, given his statue within the North American education community and the scope of his crimes, his case must be mentioned. Levin pleaded guilty to three counts in exchange for having the other charges dropped. He said, in on-line chats, he was interested in “normalizing the subject of sexual touching of children.”
Levin said “he wished he had a son but he’d nonetheless sexually abused a couple of boys as well as his own girls.” Levin “hoped his daughters would ‘share’ their own children (his grandchildren) with him.” He “further expressed his desire to have sexual intercourse with the three kids his chat-pal pretended to have and then introduced the woman, in cyberspace, to another person who apparently had sexual interest in children and, once all nicely interconnected, they discussed the sexual abuse of kids.”
Levin told one on-line mother, in reality an undercover investigator, he would “to “f — — all 3 (of her children) in front of you with your help … would they submit or would I need to tie them?” Levin was due to be sentencing 13 April 2015. Levin was free, under “the supervision” of his wife pending sentencing.
Diane Ross, a 45 year old Chair of the English Department at Lake Forest College, was arrested, May 2000, and charged with three felony counts of dissemination of child pornography. She was indicted, July 2000, on 13 counts of sending child porn which included young girls and adults involved in sexual intercourse, oral sex and masturbation. Ross pleaded guilty and was sentenced, October 2000, to two years probation, with no jail time. Ross was caught when members of her “child porn ring” came under investigation in California. Ross received her undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees from Yale University. She is the mother of two children and was a local Girl Scout troop leader.
Edward Bryan Roberts, a 54 year old physics professor at Winona State University, was charged, 12 November 2014, with eight felony child pornography counts. He was using his university computer to trade in child rape and torture, aka child pornography. Investigators found at least 30 videos on Roberts’ computer that showed children, many of whom were determined to be between the ages of 4 and 7 years old and were forcibly engaged in various sexual acts with adult males.” It has been reported that Information technology staff discovered the child sex abuse image/videos in 2011, and some reports say this discovery was made in 2008, on Robert’s university computer and reported this to both university authorities and local law enforcement. It is not clear why it took local law enforcement years to charge Roberts. The university placed Roberts on paid administrative leave, banned him from the classroom and then did not renew his contract.
was arrested, 10 January 2012, and charged with distribution and possession of child pornography. He used his university computer to trade in child rape and torture. Swiatek pleaded guilty and was sentenced, 4 March 2013, to four years in prison.
Community College, was arrested, April 2013, and charged with 12 counts of child exploitation for trade in child pornography. He was also a volunteer at Duke University’s Talent Identification Program, mentoring young children. His online handle was “Mr. Silk 77” and he was discovered by law enforcement on internet sites motherless.com and others sites called jailbait and incest. He was originally held at the Wake County Detention Center on $900,000 bond pending sentencing. He was sentenced, 1 June 2014, to probation only. He is a registered sex offender.
Adam Zydney, a 26 year old former instructor at the John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (a summer program for K-12 grade children) and a Penn State graduate student in the math department, was arrested on 31 August 2015, on child sex abuse charges.
He faces 836 felony counts of child pornography possession. At the time of his arrest, Zydney had over 500 files of child sex abuse. He told investigators he had been trading in child sex abuse since he was a teenager.
Zydney is the son of school board member Laurel Zydney. He has been free on $15,000 unsecured bail since his arrest. There is no date set for sentencing because Zydney appealed to Superior Court, 26 August 2016, to dismiss all charges. Superior Court has not yet set a date for oral arguments.
Benjamin Felker, a 28 year old employee of Wheaton College, was
arrested, September 2016, and charged with four felony counts of possession of child pornography on his home computer. He was placed on unpaid leave and barred fro campus.
At the time of his arrest, Ledbetter was caught having downloaded more than 800 child rape images on his university computer. He also had 7 thumb drives in his office with over, 5,500 images and 111 videos of child sex abuse.
The university placed Ledbetter on leave and he is currently free on $90,000 bond.
Paul Bradley Meagher, a 43 year old University of North Dakota campus police officer, was arrested, 4 November 2015, on ten felony child porn counts. All ten state charges were dropped in lieu of Meagher pleading guilty to three federal child pornography charges. On 6 February 2017, Meagher was sentenced to 10 years in prison followed by ten years of supervised release. At the time of his arrest Meagher had more than 100,000 images/videos of children being raped and torture including the rape of a four year old child. Meagher worked at the Grand Forks Juvenile Detention Center before his university employment.
Trevor Theron Long, a 29 year old South Florida State College information technology (IT) employee, was arrested, 12 May 2014, on 51 counts of child porn possession. His bond was set at $5,000 per count. He had been in custody since his May arrest.
Long was re-arrested in jail, 19 February 2015, and charged with an additional 42 child porn counts bringing the total charges to one count of possession of obscene materials and 92 counts of transmission of obscene materials.
Long was trading in the rape and torture of children, aka child porn, that included “children, ages 4 to 10, either performing sex acts or having sex acts performed on them.”
South Florida State College terminated Long’s employment for violating college policy regarding use of campus technology. He had been using his South Florida State College computer to trade in child rape and torture.
child porn possession, 13 counts of unauthorized access to a computer system, eight counts of distributing material showing a child in the nude, two counts of posing a child in the nude and single counts of possessing a firearm without a firearm identification card, improper storage of a firearm and attempting to commit a crime. Linnehan was indicted, 16 January 2014, on 37 counts. He pleaded guilty, 3 February 2015, to more than 30 charges. Linnehan was free on $25,000 bail pending sentencing. He was sentenced, 24 February 2015, to 8–10 years in prison.
In addition to possessing more than one million videos/images of child sex abuse, Linnehan also illegally access student computers and email accounts and stole private photographs. Linnehan was caught when Amanda Lambert, a mother in California, was caught producing and distributing child sex abuse images/videos of her own children. Lambert pleaded guilty 6 October 2014 to sexual exploitation of a child and distributing child pornography and was sentenced to 22 years in federal prison. Linnehan had been trading child sex abuse images with Lambert, including those of Lambert’s own 4 and 6 year old daughters. Springfield College placed Linnehan on administrative leave on 2 April 2013, and terminated his employed on 5 April 2013. Linnehan is the father of a 4 year old boy.
Daniel Shaw, 47 year old information technology (IT) staff for Purdue University, was arrested, 23 September 2014, and charged with two felony counts of possession of child pornography and a felony count of child exploitation. He pleaded guilty, 27 January 2015, to child porn possession. He was set to be sentenced 7 April 2015.
He had been trading in videos/images of children in “nude or in states of undress in sexually suggestive poses, engaged in sexual activity or being subjected to sadomasochistic sexual abuse.” He was released on $500 cash bond plus $5,000 surety. He had been employed at Purdue since 2009. The university said he had left his position, upon his arrest, for “personnel reasons.”
Steven Germinder, a 58 year old finance employee at University of Michigan, was arrested on child porn charges and indicted, 11 March 2015, on one count each of child porn distribution, receipt and possession.
Germinder was trading in child sex abuse, including bestiality, from his university computers. A university security officer alerted university police. Upon his arrest, investigators seized some 64 DVDs from his home. An initial forensic exam detailed 20,000 images “which represented only a small portion of the image files.” An estimated 3,000 were of child sex abuse. A 12 page long spreadsheet listed the child sex abuse he was trading. Germinder remained in custody pending trial. The university terminated his employment.
Jeffrey Shira, a 60 year old information technology (IT) employee with Ohio University, was arrested, 18 February 2015, and charged with ten counts of pandering obscenity involving a minor. Shira was held in Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail in lieu of $100,000 bond. Investigators seized a “large amount of child pornography” from his home. Shira was caught when he mistakenly left two flash drives containing child sex abuse images/videos in a donation he gave to a local church. Upon his arrest, Ohio University placed Shira on paid administrative leave.
Charles Hitlin, 42 year Head of Information Technology (IT) at
University of North Carolina was arrested, 18 February 2013, and charged with 47 counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor. He had previously been arrested, 19 December 2012, and charged with two counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor. In a deal, Hitlin pleaded guilty to nine counts of second degree sex exploitation of a minor and all other charges were dismissed. He was sentenced, 28 May 2014, to 15–27 months in prison all of which were suspended making his final sentence only 36 months probation. Hitlin is now a registered sex offender.
Hitlin was caught interacting, from his university computer, on a child sex abuse trading site (chat.motherless.com) with an undercover agent; Detective Mike Deaton who alerted university authorities. Hitlin also used his university email email@example.com to distribute child sex abuse images.
Amy Hitlin, Charles’ wife, was a Senior Assistant Director of University Career Services for UNC’ School of Public Health. In the on-line chats with the undercover detective, apparently, Charles Hitlin pretended he was his wife and posed as “she” and “alluded to sexual acts and intercourse with minors,” said “liked to have sexual relations with 10 or more individuals at a time, including “neighbors and coworkers” and said “her” husband, who was an IT manager on campus, “watched the interactions.” “She” also said “sometimes the neighborhood kids would come over to have sex… a 15-year-old boy brought his 12-year-old brother.” His wife, Amy, was not charged in relation to this case.
Are universities and colleges “protecting the institution” and not children being trafficked, raped and tortured? Institutions that protect criminals are corrupt institutions. Protecting child rapists, and those who trade in the criminal enterprise of child rape, cripples institutions. It does not protect them. Ask the Catholic Church.
No more silence. No more “institutional” protection by universities and colleges for those who trade in child rape. No child pornography should ever be traded on university and college campuses. Demand an end to child pornography on university and college campuses.
Lori Handrahan, Ph.D. can be