Stolen Cell Phone Leads to Child Pornography Arrest

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The Washington County Sheriff’s Department arrested a Texas man on Friday after an investigation that started with a stolen cell phone revealed he had exchanged sexually explicit photos with a 16-year-old girl.

William Rose, 54, was picked up by Washington County deputies in Midland County, Texas, and transported to Fayetteville, officers said. Rose was booked in the Washington County Detention Center on Friday night and has a $10,000 bond, according to the Sheriff’s Department website.

Rose faces felony charges of distributing, possessing or viewing child pornography and engaging children in sexually explicit conduct for use in a visual or print medium, according to an affidavit for probable cause that was filed Nov. 20, 2012.

An affidavit for probable cause from the Fayetteville Police Department said an officer responded to a report of a stolen cell phone in early August 2012, and the man whose cell phone was stolen said he received “numerous” sexually explicit text messages after he transferred his phone number to a new phone. The man told officers he called the number from the text messages and spoke with a man, identified as Rose, and learned that a juvenile male had stolen his phone, the affidavit said.

The man told officers he called the juvenile’s mother and learned that the intended recipient of the text messages was her juvenile daughter, the sister of the boy who was alleged to have stolen the phone, the affidavit said. The man told officers he didn’t want to press theft charges against the juvenile male but wanted to report the text messages, the affidavit said.

Fayetteville officers contacted the juvenile girl, who told police she had used the stolen cell phone to send text messages to several people, including Rose. The girl told police the two had exchanged messages that turned sexual a few weeks before, the affidavit said.

The girl said she had sent sexually explicit messages and a topless photo of herself to Rose, the affidavit said. When she asked Rose for a photo in return, she said he sent her one of his erect penis, the affidavit said.

The girl’s mother told officers that Rose sent her two text messages asking for forgiveness, the affidavit said. On Aug. 8, 2012, officers spoke with Rose on the telephone and he admitted to exchanging sexually explicit text messages and photos with the girl, the affidavit said.