A Marysville man who took nude pictures and created pictures of himself with local girls will spend more than three decades in prison.
In August, Paul E. Oliver, 36, of 121 Northcrest Drive, Marysville, pleaded guilty to 10 counts of illegal use of a minor or impaired person in nudity-oriented material or performance, six counts of pandering sexually oriented matter involving a minor and two counts of voyeurism.
He was sentenced this week to a minimum of 33 years and 10 months in prison.
“I am pleased with that” said Union County Prosecutor Dave Phillips.
He said it was appropriate that there were 16 local girls identified and Oliver received prison time for each one individually.
“There were photos of hundreds of children we don’t know who they are, but as far as the local children, the ones who we know who they are, we felt that they each deserved justice.”
He said that while there is no indication Oliver ever touched any of the girls, he demonstrated a “pattern of escalation” starting with adult pornography then child pornography. According to court records, Oliver grew bored of child pornography so he added pictures of local girls, then took pictures, then added pictures of himself interacting with the children.
“Law enforcement and my office felt that he was headed toward actual abuse,” Phillips said. “There is no indication he had done so yet, but it was headed in that direction.”
According to court documents, Oliver took pictures of girls he knew in the bathroom without their knowledge. He also took and had access to seemingly innocent pictures of other local girls he knew.
Oliver would search for and download pornographic images of children. He would use a computer program to alter the original image and put the local girls’ face on the child in the picture. Sometimes he would also add nude pictures of himself to the image, as well. In some pictures the child would appear to be tied up.
Oliver came to local attention in March when an agent with the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force contacted the Marysville Division of Police. Because the software Oliver was using to alter the images was cloud-based, the company that operates the software has access to the images. The software company flagged several of the images, suspecting them of child pornography. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children was contacted and in turn contacted the Ohio Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. Law enforcement officials at that time had 19 pictures of nude or nearly nude girls, with an estimated age range of 6-10 years old. A subpoena was issued to determine a physical location for the computer that was creating the images. The physical address came back to the Northcrest Drive home.
At that point, local law enforcement officials were notified. Investigators used social media accounts of people Oliver knew to determine who the local children were. Local school resource officers were also able to provide the names for the children.
A search warrant was issued for Oliver’s home and electronics. Oliver agreed to go to the Marysville Police station while investigators searched his home.
Oliver said he wanted an attorney. He told officers his life was “pretty much over.” He gave police a fake phone number and told investigators he had lost his phone.
When the man’s wife arrived at the home, she gave police her husband’s phone number. Police found the phone between a desk and the wall in the home.
The wife allowed investigators to search her electronic devices. She also looked at the faces on some of the images and told investigators their names as well as information about the parents.
Electronic devices seized as part of the search warrant were taken to the Ohio State Police computer crime lab to be processed.
Oliver was released but went missing for more than a week. He was eventually found at the home of a friend’s mother. He was arrested because by that time at least some images from his cell phone had been recovered.
When the review was complete, investigators located 776 files of interest, 595 pictures, 10 videos, 11 user dictionary terms related to child pornography and 160 web histories of interest.
Of the 500 pictures, “the vast majority of those being images of pre-pubescent females in various stages of undress.”
More than 100 of the images contained at least the face of “numerous” local girls, all under the age of 14 years old.
Oliver told investigators he never intended to get involved with child pornography, he just accidentally found it. Phillips said he doubts that because the images were not the type that even extreme pornography sites will host.
In addition to the prison sentence, a minimum of two years for each pictured child, Oliver was ruled to be a Tier II sex offender, meaning once he is released, he will need to register with the sheriff’s office every 180 days for 25 years.
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