Reserve sheriff's deputy faces child pornography charges


A reserve sheriff's deputy in Franklin County faces federal charges in connection with producing and distributing child pornography.  

Federal investigators say Derek Walton, 31, sent more than a dozen videos and still images of young girls in sexual situations to undercover officers.

Law enforcement officers from the FBI, Indiana State Police as well as other local and federal agencies searched Walton's Union County home on Friday.  They seized a laptop computer and a thumb drive that was hidden behind a mirror in the master bedroom.   The US Attorney says investigators also "found a small video camera hidden in a can in the living room.  This camera was found to contain additional explicit materials showing a minor female."

Investigators say the drive contained more than a dozen videos and pictures that showed Walton filming a naked girl who is under the age of 16. 

The investigation started in late 2011 when Walton's email provider, AOL, contacted the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children child pornography sent from an email account that investigators traced to Walton.

Court documents filed Friday, say, on occasion, Walton used the internet connection at the Franklin County Security Center to access the email accounts through which they say he distributed the child pornography.  They also say the address attached to one of the accounts is a vacant lot across the street from the Wayne County Sheriff's Office and Jail.

Federal investigators say Walton was previously employed by the Union County Sheriff's Office as a reserve Deputy and jail officer, the Richmond Police Department and as a Deputy Marshal for the Laurel Police Department.  He has worked for Franklin County since 2004.

Walton is charged with five counts of production of child pornography and distributing child pornography.

If he's convicted, Walton faces several decades in prision.  The U.S. Attorney says he could also be sentenced to years of supervised released and lifetime registration as a sexual predator.