October 16, 2013
Lawrence County man arrested for alleged child pornography distribution, videotaping underage females with hidden camera
HARRISBURG - Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane today announced the arrest of a Lawrence County man accused of distributing child pornography and using a hidden camera in a shopping cart to video underage females at a local Wal-Mart.
Kane identified the defendant as Scott Nicolls, 43, 407 Blaine St., New Castle, Lawrence County.
According to the criminal complaint, agents, who were conducting an online investigation, found numerous online files shared from Nicolls's computer. The files allegedly contained depictions of children, under the age of 18, posing naked in sexually suggestive positions or engaging in extremely sexually graphic acts.
Following Nicolls's arrest, agents from the Attorney General's Computer Forensics Unit were analyzing computers seized as a result of a search warrant, and discovered home videos Nicolls allegedly took of underage females at a local Wal-Mart.
The charges state that Nicolls used a video camera, which was hidden in a shopping cart, and followed underage females throughout the store as well as in the parking lot. Agents said that the focus of the videos was on the girls' buttocks as they walked through the store, exited the store, or stood in line with parents or friends.
Nicolls was arrested on Friday, Oct. 11, 2013 by agents from the Attorney General's Child Predator Section and charged with seven counts of possession of child pornography, three counts of distribution of child pornography and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.
He was preliminarily arraigned before New Castle Magisterial District Judge Melissa Amodie. Bond is set at $75,000. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Oct. 22, 2013 at 9:30 a.m.
The case will be prosecuted in Lawrence County by Deputy Attorney General Anthony Marmo of the Attorney General's Child Predator Section.
Attorney General Kane thanked the New Castle Police Department for its assistance with the investigation.
Reporting Internet Predators
Suspected Internet predators can be reported to the Attorney General's Child Predator Section using the online complaint form or by calling the Child Predator Hotline, at 1-800-385-1044.
Internet safety tips and other information are available in the 'Operation Safe Surf" section of the Attorney General's website. Organizations interested in materials, speakers or presentations should contact the Attorney General's Education and Outreach Unit at 1-800-525-7642 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
(A person charged with a crime is presumed innocent until proven guilty.)
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