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Franklin-area man charged in child porn case

Published 12:10pm Tuesday, November 27, 2012

FRANKLIN—Authorities on Monday seized several hundred child pornography photos on a computer connected to a 47-inch monitor from a Franklin-area home.

The Isle of Wight County Sheriff’s Office arrested Michael Alan Butzlaff, 52, of 2268 Elmwood Drive.

“It’s impossible to say (how many photos were on the computer),” said Capt. Rick Gaddis with the sheriff’s office. “We’re not going to be the ones who get into the computers.”

No evidence leads investigators to suspect Butzlaff had physical contact with any child. However evidence was discovered indicating he communicated with young girls over the Internet, the sheriff’s office reported.

Often, Butzlaff allegedly would pose as a young girl or boy to solicit nude images. The location and identity of those children is not known at this time.

The sheriff’s office on Nov. 20 received information regarding Internet-based child pornography being traced to Butzlaff’s home, where he lives alone. The information came from a law enforcement task force with the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office, which works with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

Based on the information and investigation, the sheriff’s office obtained a search warrant. Butzlaff was home during the search and did not resist arrest, Gaddis said.

The investigation is ongoing.

Another agency several years ago had suspected Butzlaff of child pornography, Gaddis said.

Butzlaff is charged with four counts of possession of child pornography, and one count each of distribution of child pornography and use of communication systems to facilitate offenses involving children.

Butzlaff is being held without bond at the Western Tidewater Regional Jail.

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