Ricky Lee McDaniel was originally arrested in August 2003 but the indictment was later dropped in lieu of evidence being examined.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Will Traynor said the hard drive of a computer, thought to contain evidence, was damaged and took a lengthy amount of time to recover. McDaniel was reindicted in 2008 on the same charges.
Judge Harold L. Murphy dismissed a charge of receiving child pornography, citing the statute of limitations. However, the judge upheld a possession of child pornography charge.
Defense Attorney Giles Jones said the long delay was a “tactical disadvantage” to his client.
During the trial, Traynor said, the evidence spoke for itself.
“There no question that the 1,200 images and four videos were child pornography or that McDaniel possessed it,” said Traynor.
The defense centered on McDaniel’s testimony that, while he did live alone, he was not the only person with access to his computer and passwords.
There were images found stored on floppy discs and videos not stored on the computer, but found within the home. However, there were also images in an email account under the name “third opinion” that McDaniel alleges were not his.
Jones held up a white plastic box containing the floppy disks and told the jury that it isn’t enough to be in possession of the box — the person must know that the box contains child pornography to be able to be convicted of possession.
He said the government had not proved that.
Traynor said the additional account was just a “distraction” to take the jury away from the evidence in the case.
The jury deliberated nearly 90 minutes before returning a verdict of guilty.