Grants Pass man arrested on child porn and drug charges

GRANTS PASS — Local high-tech cops have arrested a Grants Pass man for allegedly distributing child pornography and also on drug charges following a seven-month investigation.

Officers with the Southern Oregon High-Tech Crimes Task Force began the investigation into Robert Edwin Parmelee, 61, in December 2010 when they received a tip that images of child porn were reported downloaded to a computer in Grants Pass.

Those videos showed the sexual abuse of young children, according to task force supervisor Lt. Josh Moulin of the Central Point Police Department.

The task force eventually tracked the images to a computer in the 1200 block of S.W. Oak Street in Grants Pass.

Investigators determined that a residence on the street was the distribution point of the videos.

"We don't believe the videos featured local children," Moulin said. "Most of the child pornography we find comes from out of the area."

On June 7, members of the task force assisted by the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety served a search warrant at the Parmelee's home.

During the search warrant, investigators interviewed Parmelee and seized multiple items of digital evidence as well as marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

Since the time of the search warrant, certified forensic computer examiners within the task force analyzed the digital evidence and have arrested Parmelee on multiple felony charges.

Parmelee is lodged in the Josephine County Jail on eight counts of first-degree encouraging child sexual abuse, eight counts of second-degree encouraging child sexual abuse, possession of marijuana and distribution of marijuana.

He remains lodged on more than $1 million bail.

The high-tech crimes task force is a multi-jurisdictional team made up of members of the Central Point Police Department, Medford Police Department, FBI, Ashland Police Department, Grants Pass Department of Public Safety, Jackson County District Attorney's Office, Klamath Falls Police Department, and U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Reach reporter Chris Conrad at 541-776-4471; or email cconrad@mailtribune.com.


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