Crime

Maryville man charged with 6 counts of possessing, distributing child pornography

Federal program targets online child predators

The Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force was developed federally in 1998 as the number of children and teenagers using the internet increased and child sexual abuse images became available electronically, authorities say.
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The Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force was developed federally in 1998 as the number of children and teenagers using the internet increased and child sexual abuse images became available electronically, authorities say.

A Maryville man faces six felony charges after an investigation into a child pornography distribution conspiracy led police to him.

Jeffrey Scott Fortner, 54, is accused of possessing and distributing child pornography on an online social media website, Capt. David Vucich of the Madison County Sheriff’s Department wrote on Facebook.

The department’s Digital Forensic Unit launched an investigation into the site in an effort to isolate the origin of the distribution, Vucich said. On April 9, a search warrant was executed at Fortner’s house in the 3300 block of Mary Drive in Maryville.

There, police found evidence to charge Fortner with three counts of child pornography distribution and three counts of child pornography possession.

Fortner’s bail was set at $100,000. He was being held Wednesday evening at the Madison County Jail.

Hana Muslic has been a public safety reporter for the Belleville News-Democrat since August 2018, covering everything from crime and courts to accidents, fires and natural disasters. She is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s College of Journalism and her previous work can be found in The Lincoln Journal-Star and The Kansas City Star.
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