A Catholic priest faces five years in prison after he admitted in Superior Court on Thursday that he had child pornography on his computer and chatted about sex on the Internet with underage boys. The Rev. Michael Miller, 43, of Berlin, pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography, obscenity and three counts of risk of injury to a minor before Judge Hillary Strackbein. He is expected to be sentenced July 9 to a prison term of 20 years, suspended after five, followed by 20 years of probation. He used church computers for some of the crimes, his lawyer, William St. John, said outside the courtroom. But St. John said his client was never accused of touching boys. "He's extremely remorseful," St. John said. "There are a lot of people who love this guy." He wouldn't let the priest talk to the media. Miller will never function as a priest again, said Maria Zone, spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Hartford. He was a pastor at St. Paul Roman Catholic Church in Berlin, and his victims were church members, students at the church's school or both. He was suspended from public ministry as soon as police told the church about the allegations, Zone said. According to a warrant for Miller's arrest, a woman contacted police on July 2, 2011, after learning about a Facebook conversation the priest was having with her 13-year-old son. The priest commented that some professional wrestlers had "nice butts," the mother said. She looked up past Facebook chats between the two and learned that the priest had made comments about the boy being in puberty and about how the priest is "addicted to porn" and pleasures himself, the warrant states. The priest also invited the boy to come over and watch a "dirty movie" so they could "have some fun," and also wrote in "extreme detail" about sex acts he would perform on the boy, the warrant says. Miller was arrested on July 11, 2011. Police also learned about a 16-year-old victim from a social worker. After interviewing that boy, police learned that the priest had emailed to the teen -- from a church computer -- videos of an unknown person masturbating, according to prosecutor Christian Watson and court documents. Investigators later identified more teens with whom Miller had inappropriate Facebook chats during an computer analysis conducted at the New Britain Police Department. There were seven all together. They learned that Miller called another teen -- a 15-year-old, according to another warrant -- "sexy," and also told the teen that he engaged in sex acts with members of the priest's soccer team, Watson said. Miller told another juvenile that he was bisexual, the warrant states. That boy told police that the priest started out talking about online video games, school and sports, but gradually moved on to sexual topics. The computer examination also turned up five pornographic videos of children, including one with boys ages 6 to 10 performing sex acts on each other and another involving a younger girl and an adult. Miller was arrested again on June 14, 2012. In a joint statement, the archdiocese and Miller's order, the Franciscan Friars Conventual, said Miller's guilty pleas follow "many months of personal deliberation, reflection and prayer. During this time, Miller has received medical treatment and undergone therapy. "We hope that Miller's plea will give some solace and closure to the minors he violated -- and their families. We will continue to pray for them so that they will continue to heal from this regrettable experience." The Hartford Courant, Christine Dempsey
A Newtown man is facing sentencing for sexually assaulting a 4-year-old girl and taking photos and video of the abuse. Twenty-nine-year-old Edward Wilson is to be sentenced Wednesday in federal court in Hartford. He pleaded guilty in February to producing child pornography and faces 21 to 26 years in prison under federal sentencing guidelines.
On Saturday, April 27th, a Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event will be held in Fairfield, Connecticut at 9 am. The event will be benefit The Center of Women and Families of Eastern Fairfield County. At the end of the event Dawn Daniels mother of Jerry Sandusky's first victim along with his therapist will speak. Walk a Mile in Her Shoes® The International Men's March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault & Gender Violence is a project of Venture Humanity, Inc. a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit corporation. Men literally walk one mile in women's high heeled shoes to protest sexualized violence, educate their communities and raise money for chronically underfunded rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters and other sexualized violence prevention and recovery services. The Center for Women and Families is a domestic violence and sexual assault agency. The Center provides free and confidential services to victims of Domestic Violence, Sexual Violence, and severe child sexual and/or physical abuse. Our services are offered to residents of Bridgeport, Easton, Fairfield, Monroe, Stratford, and Trumbull. REGISTRATION, START POINT, AND PARKING INFORMATION Registration opens at 8:30 AM. Please arrive no later than 8:50 AM. Start Point is at The Fairfield Train Station (165 Unquowa Road, Fairfield). FREE Parking is available at The Fairfield Train Station. EVENT SCHEDULE The Walk will start at approximately 9:00 AM at the Fairfield Train Station and ends at the Fairfield Town Hall on Old Post Road with a closing ceremony and refreshments to follow.
A family physician in Tolland who was active in the Boy Scouts and provided physical examinations to boys involved in teen-aged sports was sentenced to 51 months in prison Tuesday after being caught with one of the biggest child porn collection ever found in Connecticut. Federal prosecutors said Dr. Carl Koplin's pornography collection, which he made available to others across the Internet, was large enough to fill 170 DVDs. When compiling his obscene collection from film made available by others, prosecutors said, Koplin once found a pornographic photograph of a boy he had treated for depression. Rather than report the photograph, as physicians are required, prosecutors said Koplin deleted the image. "This defendant's appalling collection of child pornography was one of the largest that we have seen here in Connecticut,"
An employee at the Westerly YMCA and a camp counselor at the YMCA's Camp Harrington in Massachusetts has been arrested and charged with possession and transmission of child pornography. Dana Gingerelli, 20 of Westerly R.I., was arrested on Thursday morning by Rhode Island State Police. Police initiated the investigations after reports that child pornography was being shared on the internet. Upon search of Gingerelli's residence on Canton Street in Westerly a smartphone with child pornography on it was discovered. Futher investigation revealed that the phone belonged to Gingerelli and that the illegal images had also been transferred from the device.
This article was a feature story in The New York Times Magazine last week. It speaks of victims of child pornography and possible restitution they may receive. The story features 2 victims and their struggles into adulthood. The detective spread out the photographs on the kitchen table, in front of Nicole, on a December morning in 2006. She was 17, but in the pictures, she saw the face of her 10-year-old self, a half-grown girl wearing make-up. The bodies in the images were broken up by pixelation, but Nicole could see the outline of her father, forcing himself on her. Her mother, sitting next to her, burst into sobs.
In just over a month, more than 120 sexually exploited children -- one just 19 days old -- were identified in an international operation that found them depicted in child pornography on the Internet, U.S. officials said Thursday. In Operation Sunflower, led by agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigation unit from Nov. 1 to Dec. 7, 123 victims of child sexual exploitation were identified, ICE Director John Morton said at a press conference in Washington. Of that group, 44 children had been living with their abusers, and 79 children were exploited by people outside of their home or were victimized as children and are now adults. Seventy female and 53 male victims rescued; 110 of the victims were identified in 19 U.S. states and the rest were identified in six foreign countries.
Thompson went below the recommended sentence of at least17 1/2 years because of Osmun's quick admission, cooperation in identifying the victims And his desire to obtain treatment. He pleaded guilty to traveling overseas to have sex with a minor. Osmun apologized to the 12 church members who were present, his parents, the victims and the Peace Corps whose image he said was tarnished by his actions. Osmun has been in custody since his Aug. 4, 2011 arrest by agents from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement division at his parent's home in Milford. His father is the Rev. Andrew Osmun of St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Milford. In a letter to Thompson, Osmun told the judge: "When I could not get my fix from pornography, I moved on to hands on offending, as many sex offenders can probably attest." U.S. Attorney David Fein, who prosecuted the case with Assistant U.S. Attorney Krishna Patel maintained that Osmun's "prior instances of his misconduct were not properly reported. Indeed, if Osmun's prior conduct had been known, he would not have been accepted as a volunteer with the Peace Corps and the abuse to these children would have been avoided." ... About a month after Jesse's arrest, Seth was arrested by police in Austin, Texas for allegedly possessing child pornography. Police there found pictures on his computer of a young girl, between seven and nine years old engaging in intercourse and oral sex with an adult male, according to an affidavit submitted by Sgt. Robert Sunley, of the Southern Texas Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. As reported in CT Post by Michael P. Mayko
A former long-time music director at Christ Church Greenwich, Robert F. Tate, 70, has been released from the federal prison term he was serving following a 2008 child pornography conviction and has moved to a New Canaan apartment. At his sentencing hearing in 2008, Tate, admitted to a 40 year history of sexual abuse of minors overseas as well as viewing hundreds of sexually-explicit photos of children dating back to the 1960s. Tate was not charged criminally for those acts, but did acknowledge having sex with boys in Thailand, the Phillippines and Costa Rica. According to the state Sex Offender's Registry, Tate is living at 279 Elm St., Apartment 2, following his release from federal prison last week.