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GBI: Janitor arrested for child porn

COVINGTON - The Georgia Bureau of Investigation has arrested a janitor from Mansfield Elementary School who has been charged in connection with possession of child pornography, according to GBI spokesman John Bankhead.

Brian Evan Morgan, 48, of 10920 Covington Bypass was arrested Dec. 11, following the execution of a search warrant at his apartment.

"We had developed information he was sharing files of child porn and had probable cause to obtain a search warrant," Bankhead said. "We did an on-site review of his computer at the residence and located numerous movie files of suspected child pornography."

Morgan was arrested and charged with two counts of sexual exploitation of a child and was taken to the Newton County Detention Center where he is still being held on $20,000 bond.

Bankhead said the computer would be analyzed forensically and further charges may be forthcoming.

He said he believed the data obtained so far was what is typically shared by pedophiles over the Internet, and there is no reason to believe that the images involve any local children.

According to Newton County Schools spokeswoman Sherri Viniard, Morgan has been employed with the school system since March 19 of this year when he was hired for a custodial position at Mansfield Elementary.

"These are serious allegations and the school system took action as soon as we were apprised of the nature of the investigation," Viniard said. "Mr. Morgan has been informed that his employment will be terminated. Mr. Morgan has not and will not be permitted on school property."

Viniard said the school system was assured by investigators that no students were involved in connection with the allegations against Morgan and that no improper activity occurred at school.

"This all occurred off campus during off hours." she said. "To make certain, system technology specialists checked each computer at Mansfield and confirmed that there was no inappropriate computer activity on the school's computers."

Viniard went on to say, "The safety and well-being of our students is always a primary concern."

Bankhead said cases such as these come to the GBI via the national Cyber Tipline and are referred to the agency's High Technology Unit.

"The Governor provided us with additional agents a couple of years ago to expand and concentrate on Internet crime against children," Bankhead said.

He said the GBI task force is one of 46 through the nation and there are 34 affiliate agencies in Georgia that are part of it.

Anyone with information about child pornography should contact the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children's Cyber Tipline at www.missingkids.com or phone 1-800-843-5678 or call local law enforcement agencies.

Also, it is important to realize, downloading or making a copy of child pornography for any reason, even to provide it as evidence to law enforcement, is a crime in the United States. Anyone who runs across what is believed to be child pornography, should record the Web address and report only that to law enforcement.