Cottonwood AZ (September 25, 2012) - The Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office, in cooperation with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), conducted a joint investigation resulting in the arrest of 48-year-old Cornville Arizona resident, Troy Lee Curtis, for possessing child pornography.In late 2009, HSI Special Agents based in Flagstaff, Arizona and Los Angeles, California became aware of a website chat room utilized by an individual to facilitate the distribution and receipt of child pornography. Agents of the Child Exploitation Investigations Group (CEIG) in Los Angeles monitored the chat room and discovered an individual who had posted approximately fifty-six (56) images of child pornography.
A forensic internet investigation linked the images to an account belonging to Troy Lee Curtis with an address in the 2700 block of Horton Road, Cornville, Arizona.
In August of 2010, the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office, HSI agents, and U.S. Marshals, served a search warrant at the Curtis home and seized a computer and associated data storage cards and devices.
An HSI forensic computer agent established evidence connecting Curtis to use of the computer and storage devices. Several hundred apparent child pornography images and at least thirteen similar video files were found.
A review by experts with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) in 2011 identified several video files portraying known child victims and nearly ninety (90) images identified as known child victims.
In September of 2012, a YCSO detective from the Criminal Investigations Bureau was asked to assist HSI with a subsequent updated search warrant and intent to seek state prosecution for the violations.
On September 21, 2012, Troy Lee Curtis was contacted at his home and admitted downloading and storing child pornography based on the prior investigation. As a result, Curtis was booked for ten (10) counts of Sexual Exploitation of a Minor.
Curtis remains in custody on a $20,000 bond. An additional computer and storage drives were seized under authority of the updated search warrant and are in the process of being examined for illicit images.
Yavapai County Sheriff Scott Mascher appreciates the opportunity to partner with HSI by sharing resources and expertise, all with the goal of bringing the child pornography predators to justice. “The work in this case to prevent further victimization of children in light of the relentless pursuit of the person responsible for these crimes is highly commended,” commented Mascher.
“With this arrest, we are sending a message to all consumers of child pornography that they won’t be able to escape justice by hiding in cyberspace,” said Matt Allen, special agent in charge of HSI Arizona. “HSI and our law enforcement partners will turn every stone and use every investigative tool at our disposal to target predators and those whose actions contribute to the sexual exploitation of children.”
Citizens can contact the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office with information or questions at 928-771-3260 or the YCSO website at www.ycsoaz.gov.