NY - Stephen DeProspero for sex abuse, child porn, 2009

Discussion in 'Crimes-Spotlight on Children' started by Missizzy, Aug 28, 2010.

  1. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    All because of the want of an extra examiner, a disabled child had to wait an extra nine months for his abuse to be revealed. A very detailed article about the breakdown and redtape involved in search and seizure. A massive amount of porn was hidden on this man's cameras and computers. A poor little guy had to wait for his secret to be told. A total morass.

    http://www.uticaod.com/news/x1024316188/Child-porn-case-sheds-light-on-search-and-seizure-laws

    Child porn case sheds light on search and seizure laws

    "About a week after Stephen DeProspero was arrested in May 2009 for possessing child pornography on his computer, the Rome man’s state employers alerted prosecutors that he might have victimized some of the young disabled children he once worked with, according to court documents.

    But for nearly nine months after DeProspero’s initial arrest, evidence that he allegedly had recorded himself sexually abusing a severely autistic 9-year-old boy went unnoticed on one of his seized digital cameras, documents show....."

    and

    "....In a perfect world, it would have happened in a different order,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Lisa Fletcher, who is prosecuting DeProspero in U.S. District Court for allegedly sexually abusing a child and recording the acts.

    But because the delay in searching DeProspero’s computer wasn’t done maliciously, Fletcher said it would be extremely unreasonable to prevent prosecutors from using this crucial video evidence to prove the abuse of a child...."

    and

    "....“As the director of the Child Advocacy Center, I couldn’t have been more impatient, couldn’t have been more demanding of lab personnel, no matter what agency they were from, but we are at the mercy of the case loads that exist,” Revere said.

    “This is a perfect example of why the state police and all computer labs in New York need more examiners, only because when it comes down to kids, we are all impatient,” Revere said...."

    more at link
     
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  3. Filly

    Filly KICKING AND SHINING

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  4. Belinda

    Belinda Doer of Things

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    This really ticks me off. I understand staffing shortages, but these people were told outright that there were suspected child victims and offered to provide pictures of them. There is no excuse for this catastrophic failure. If this guy gets off the hook because they blew the evidence, it will have terrible consequences for whatever community he lives in.
     
  5. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Belinda--We're seeing the backlog here in Oregon, too. If you look at the Auchincloss/Vickoren/Clay cases here in Jackson County, the High Tech Crimes Unit seized those men's computers in October 2008 and they were not sentenced until this month. The reason given, LE was badly backlogged in the time-consuming task of examining computers. Meanwhile, the perps continued on with their lives, possibly getting new computers (I would think).

    The same thing happened in Tualatin, OR when the Mayor's housemate, Dana Leverence, was arrested and charged with possession of child porn, 18 months after his computer was seized. People have stated that during that time, children continued to visit in the home. And that's just a few local cases off the top of my head. I'm sure it's happening all over the country.

    I can't think of another crime where the possible charge is left hanging so long. It surely would be disturbing if LE made a mistake and no porn was found.

    It seems that there's such a huge uptick in child porn arrests and the "infra-structure" is not keeping pace. I would imagine it is not a popular job--having to search day in, day out for disgusting photos of children's abuse. But while everyone waits, the children are not tended to, unless they have disclosed. The little guy in the article I posted most likely didn't even have the words to tell. That's what broke my heart.
     
  6. SunnieRN

    SunnieRN New Member

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    I am disgusted by this on so many levels. Children, especially, should never have to endure these atrocities. Can you imagine being the parent of a child who was abused, due to the backlog? Maybe they need to utilize child psychologists to examine material and work on getting through the backlogs.
     
  7. VespaElf

    VespaElf Little Miss Showcase(runner-up)

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    Note the ages of the perps.....just as victims are younger and younger so are the perps!
    I really wish the majority of society would wake up & see this!
    I hear too often 'oh he's too young' or 'he's too good looking' to be a filthy pedophile ,rapist!
     
  8. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    ITA, Vespaelf, the monsters don't look like monsters any more. That's the scariest thing of all.
     
  9. VespaElf

    VespaElf Little Miss Showcase(runner-up)

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    Yes it is & STILL the hardest thing to hammer into people's heads!
    I read comments after news stories or when news is discussed at work & just shake my head!People just don't get it & for their ignorance(willfull or otherwise)more children pay the price!
     
  10. Snoopster

    Snoopster Active Member

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    This is definitely a challenge everywhere. To think that we are 'ahead of the curve' here in North America only makes it that much sadder.

    A year and a half ago I opened our local newspaper to the news that the RCMP had charged more than 60 people in a Canada-wide 'sting' against child porn. (This was only a month or so after another LE project charged over 30 people.) It was then that I realized how naiive I was.

    To make matters worse, one of those charged was the stepfather of my son's buddy. My son had slept over at their house for birthday parties, sleepovers, etc. I felt sick to my stomach. I realized it's everywhere.

    To make matters even worse, here we are a year and a half later, and the individual that I know has not even gone to court. All these people are still out there. If they are innocent.....what a tragedy. If they are guilty, who knows what else they are doing in the meantime. Justice is not being served.

    It is clear that we have made strides in this area, afterall this just used to be swept under the rug, but the internet has only added fuel to the fire! Those that may have not acted on their impulses are now readily able to do so. Just look at this current case in question. How big is Rome NY?? Only 35,000 or so? And look at this child porn ring. How did they find each other so easily? The internet, of course.

    No answers here, only frustrations. I will have to put more thought into how I can personally help, if at all.

    What do others think?
     
  11. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Snoopster--I'm so sorry about your son's experience and the worry that must be causing you. You have hit the nail on the head. I have written upwards to 100 posts about this very problem...the disconnect.

    Many people who are investigated are held for months awaiting indictments, pleas, and sentencing. Others are released to do God knows what. The problem is that we lose time in reaching the victims, precious time. I realize that there are huge busts and that the workload must be overwhelming but the infrastructure doesn't seem to be keeping up.

    Obviously, LE doesn't always want us to know that someone has been arrested due to an ongoing investigation which might prove to be domino-like. I get that. However, don't the children needs to be tended to? We are hearing, over and over, that the victims are younger and younger--often infants. How will they be identified? They don't even have the language to describe their horrors. I worry that a person will be arrested, neighbors will move on with their lives, people move away, children come and go, people forget.....and precious time is lost.

    I've spoken several times about the lack of listing of the names of those arrested in one easy to access place. I know that this is a logistical nightmare but children's mental and physical health is at stake.

    What is the answer?
     
  12. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

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    Snoopster--Might this help? I've been diligently researching the large stings for almost 12 years now and I've found that the info is not readily available. It's extremely disjointed. I started looking for this info when our children's rape trial wrapped up in February 1999 with 12 convictions. I was just certain that I would be able to find my precious children's photographs. How naive I was.

    I found this cached site which I think might be connected with the "Focus on the Family" organization. As always, I get my info where I can. I don't know if there are further updates on this but there's lots of names and info to research if anyone is interested. FWIW, I think there's a reason these stings are given names such as "Snowball" and "Avalanche":

    http://webcache.googleusercontent.c...rested&cd=5&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&client=safari

    Operation Snowball

    Date: Details of Canada’s on-going Operation Snowball first appeared in the press on January 16, 2003.

    Subject: The investigation centers on the more than 2,300 Canadians who allegedly subscribed to child pornography through Landslide Productions, a Fort Worth, Texas-based company.

    Background: Operation Snowball can trace its roots to the start of the United States’ investigation, Operation Avalanche, in April 1999. When American law enforcement officers analyzed Landslide’s business records, they discovered hundreds of thousands of subscriber from all over the world. Canadian investigators went to Dallas in June 2000 to retrieve the names of 2,329 Canadians. Six months later, police held a private briefing to determine a national strategy to investigate the crimes.

    Results: By the time of the first press reports, Canadian police had made up to 100 arrests. This represents less than five percent of the names contained on a list of Canadian subscribers. Canadian police say the country is woefully unprepared to handle such large-scale investigations....."

    Much more at link


    Also see:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Avalanche_(child_pornography_crackdown)
     
  13. Snoopster

    Snoopster Active Member

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    Here, here, Missizzy. You have hit the nail on the head.

    Regarding the 'list of arrested'...being arrested doesn't equal guilty. That is a huge part of the challenge. While I don't have delusions about the likelihood of the guilt of the person that I know (although his stepson believes the, "oh, I had my computer set on automatic download and it accidentally got saved on my hard drive" story), it's not a certainty. Would a list only encourage vigilantism?

    I think part of the solution is greater focus on speeding up the process. Could a volunteer system work? Have LE train them and they do some of the investigation/analysis of the suspects' confiscated computers, etc.?

    Who knows. Sometimes I think it is like a whack-a-mole game. How do you get ahead of it?
     

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