Investigating child pornography in central Illinois

By Ashley McNamee

November 13, 2012 Updated Nov 14, 2012 at 11:03 AM CDT

Peoria, Ill -- Child pornography is prevalent not only across the country, but is significant here in central Illinois.

Computer Forensic Scientist and Peoria Police Detective James Feehan says his investigations have put hundreds of people behind bars over the last 12 years.

Feehan says the internet is not as anonymous as pedophiles and porn producers might believe.

He says all it takes is a subpoena to the internet service provider and the identity of those viewing the illicit images is revealed.

He says one of the biggest problems is that those who view child porn rarely stop there.

"In all the cases I have done they admit that it was a real child, they knew it was a real child," said Feehan. "Some have even admitted that is the excitement, that it is occurring to a real child and that they're fantasizing about doing something with a child themselves."

In fact, Feehan cites a study by the Federal Bureau of Prisons showing that of those who posses child pornography, 80 percent go on to victimize a child themselves.

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