by LAURA HAYES
A Stockton man was taken into custody for allegedly possessing and spreading child pornography. Justin Michael Powers, 37, faces five counts of possession of child pornography and five counts of dissemination of child pornography.
On Thursday, May 25, at 9:38 a.m., Winona County Sheriff’s deputies, Winona Police Department officers, Bureau of Criminal Apprehension officers, and Internet Crimes Against Children officers executed a search warrant at Powers’ residence in Saratoga. According to Winona County Sheriff Ron Ganrude, law enforcement seized several electronic devices, scrapbooks, and media storage devices. Ganrude said that a month-long investigation indicated that Powers was in possession of child pornography.
Ganrude said that in the past, the department has lacked the necessary equipment to investigate these crimes. Winona County Chief Deputy Jeff Mueller added that the department recently began dedicating resources to investigate child pornography cases. “We’re stepping up our efforts,” Ganrude said.
If convicted, Powers could face up to seven years in prison and a $10,000 fine.