Craig man faces child exploitation charge

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— The 14th Judicial District Attorney's Office filed a criminal charge Friday against a Craig man for possessing "more than 20 different items qualifying as sexually exploitative material," according to the complaint.

The 48-year-old man faces one charge of sexual exploitation of a child, a class 4 felony. The charging document alleges he "unlawfully, feloniously and knowingly possessed or controlled any sexually exploitative material for any purpose."

His name is being withheld in accordance with Craig Daily Press policy regarding sexual-related charges.

The Moffat County Sheriff's Office arrested the man a day after the charges were filed, on Saturday, at his Craig home. He appeared in Moffat County District Court on Monday for a bond hearing and was released from Moffat County Jail after posting $10,000 bond.

Sheriff's Office investigator K.C. Hume said Moffat County deputies were contacted by the Fort Collins Police Department on Sept. 11 regarding the suspect. His name arose through a complaint filed by a Fort Collins resident, Hume said.

The Sheriff's Office has worked with Fort Collins on the case, Hume said. Fort Collins also has been in contact with Hudson, Fla., authorities concerning alleged criminal acts the suspect may have been involved in, the investigator said.

Hudson is a west Florida town north of Tampa.

Little else about the case has been made public thus far.

As it did recently in the case against Terry Hankins, a 70-year-old gold miner who is accused of murder, the court has sealed case file affidavits and arrest warrants. The District Attorney's Office requested the information be sealed from the public.

Brett Barkey, chief deputy district attorney, said the request was made to limit pre-trial exposure and to ensure the suspect receives a fair trial.

"Investigation of this matter is on-going," prosecutors wrote in a motion to seal case documents. "Details contained in the warrant and associated affidavit, if revealed to the public, could compromise this investigation."

Barkey said he had no comment on the case other than to "let the charging document speak for itself."

The charging document reveals a potential witness list containing six names including law enforcement officers from the Sheriff's Office, Craig Police Department, District Attorney's Office and the Fort Collins Police Department. The witness list also contains the name of a Craig woman and a Fort Collins woman, who is a former Moffat County High School student.

The defendant is scheduled to appear next at 10 a.m. Oct. 1 for an advisement hearing.

According to court officials, the suspect has no previous criminal convictions in Moffat County. In Routt County, a court clerk said the man's wife filed a complaint asking the court to file a temporary restraining order against him.

The court granted the order.

The Daily Press policy on sexual-related charges states that names of defendants accused on such charges will not be released unless he or she is found guilty, or if the person is a public official or person in a position of trust.

The policy exists so victims cannot be identified.

Joshua Roberts can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 210, or jroberts@craigdailypress.com.

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