AP NEWS

Cary man held under $3M after police find porn depicting children as young as 1

May 3, 2019

A Cisco employee was being held under $3 million bond after authorities said he created pornography depicting children as young as 1.

Paul Hammond Sullivan, 51, of 305 Lynden Valley Court in Cary, was arrested Thursday and charged with multiple counts of first- and second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor.

Cary police said an investigation into Sullivan began when the Internet Crimes Against Children task force received information that a pornographic image of a pre-teen female had been uploaded to the KIK messaging app from an IP address in Cary.

A search of Sullivan’s home found additional pornographic videos in which Sullivan “did use, induce, encourage and facilitate” sexual encounters between children ranging in age from 1 to 7.

Authorities were able to identify several children depicted in videos found at Sullivan’s home, but they did not say how he may have known the victims.

The Cary Police Department is the only law enforcement agency in Wake County with its own ICAC task force, which Capt. John Szymeczek said is helpful in cases like this.

“Say the messaging service says to the ICAC task force, ‘Hey, someone uploaded an image on this day and time. Here is the information,’” Szymeczek said. “So, we work it both proactively and reactively.”

Sullivan’s arrest was part of a regional crackdown on child pornography and sex crimes.

“Their techniques evolve, and our techniques have to evolve to address [it],” Szymeczek said. “This is always a cat-and-mouse game.”

Cary’s ICAC task force has a budget of about $200,000, plus personnel costs, and it is sometimes involved in cases in other cities or states.

“The goal – the ultimate goal – is to protect children and keep them safe,” Szymeczek said.