Authorities arrested three New Orleans men accused separately of possessing child pornography. The arrests were the result of a wide-reaching cyber investigation led byAttorney General Buddy Caldwell’s office and involving multiple federal and local agencies, a news release said.
Joseph Dwight Jr., 33, is accused of possessing more than 50 videos and images showing children being sexually abused and for failing to register as a sex offender. Police served a warrant to search Dwight’s home at 9770 W. Wheaton Circle after receiving an online tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
When police arrived to search his home, Dwight refused to answer the door, though he could be seen inside, the release said. Once inside, police found Dwight’s hands bloody and a broken laptop in his home. Dwight said he tried to destroy the laptop because he is a sex offender from Pennsylvania and was not allowed to be on a computer.
In a separate incident, Armando Ruiz Rivera, 30, is accused of possessing and sharing numerous images and videos of pornography involving juveniles over the Internet. Police were working undercover when Rivera allegedly shared numerous pornographic videos online with officers. Police obtained a warrant to search Rivera’s home at 6065 Annunciation St. and found additional videos and images, the release said.
In the third case, Dan Clinton Pittman Jr., 39, is accused of possession of child pornography. Investigators received a complaint that Pittman was using social media to download and share images and videos involving juveniles. Authorities found evidence of child pornography on devices taken from his 2433 Arts St. home after obtaining and serving a search warrant, the news release said.
All three men were booked Wednesday (Sept. 9) into Orleans Parish Prison.
Dwight was booked with 50 counts of possession of child pornography and one count each of failing to register as a sex offender, obstruction of justice and unlawful use or access to social media.
Rivera was arrested on 25 counts of possessing and five counts of distributing child pornography.
Pittman faces 10 counts of possessing child pornography.
The arrests were the result of investigations involving the Louisiana attorney general’s office, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office, New Orleans Police Department and Louisiana State Police.
Authorities ask the public to report cases of suspected Internet crime to the Attorney General’s Cyber Crime Unit at 800-256-4506.