Auchincloss case heads to county DA
ASHLAND — The Ashland Police Department plans to hand over its child porn investigation involving Ashland resident James Auchincloss to the Jackson County District Attorney's Office next week, the police chief said.
A Central Point crime lab finished analyzing electronic equipment seized at the homes of Auchincloss, who is a half-brother to the late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and Eagle Point resident Dennis Vickoren and sent the evidence back to Ashland, where it was received on Wednesday afternoon, Ashland Police Chief Terry Holderness said.
The department plans to submit the case to the District Attorney's Office as soon as possible, Holderness said on Thursday.
"We expect to have it to the DA by sometime next week — we're hoping by Wednesday," he said.
"That's about as quick as we can possibly go. This is a priority for us."
The fact that the department is planning to submit the case to the District Attorney's Office doesn't necessarily mean that police believe a crime occurred, Holderness said.
"We think that we at least need the DA's evaluation on the evidence we have," he said.
A detective is reviewing the report from the Central Point High-Tech Crimes Task Force and tying up loose ends in the case, Holderness said.
The police chief declined to elaborate on what the crime lab found.
Sgt. Josh Moulin, the task force commander, also said he couldn't discuss what the lab discovered during the forensic analysis because the investigation is ongoing.
When it receives the police report, the District Attorney's Office will review it and decide whether or not to take the case to a grand jury, a process that could take several weeks, Holderness said.
Police seized computers, cameras and other electronic equipment at the homes of Auchincloss, 62, and Vickoren, 57, in October, and soon after sent the evidence to the Central Point lab. Because police believed there was no immediate threat, the lab assigned a lower priority to the case, taking more than eight months to analyze the data.
According to a search warrant affidavit, police found carousel slides and booklets at Auchincloss' home containing photos of nude or partially nude prepubescent boys engaged in sexual acts.
Auchincloss declined to discuss what police found at his home, but said last month that he did not harm anyone. Neither he nor Vickoren returned calls seeking comment for this story.
Hannah Guzik is a reporter for the Ashland Daily Tidings. She can be reached at 482-3456 ext. 226, or email@example.com.