Images of child abuse, animal abuse seized in Jacksonville
A Jackson County man was arrested Friday on felony charges after police said they found hundreds of child pornography images and dozens of images of animals being sexually abused.
Gary Lee Watts, 61, was arrested at his home in the 7300 block of Upper Applegate Road early Friday morning, capping off an investigation going back more than a year, according to a press release issued by the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office.
Southern Oregon High-Tech Crimes Task Force investigators said they found more than 700 images of child pornography on equipment seized from Watts’ home, according to the sheriff’s office, plus more than 50 images of animal sexual abuse.
The sheriff’s office started its investigation in September of last year, after the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children alerted local police of child pornography being downloaded at the home.
The sheriff’s office had assistance from Oregon State Police, Medford police and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in the case.
The sheriff’s office arrested Watts on 20 felony counts of first-degree encouraging child sexual abuse and 10 misdemeanor counts of encouraging sexual assault of an animal. Watts was held in the Jackson County Jail Friday on $275,000 bail, records show.
Court records show no prior criminal history for Watts.