Brownsville man indicted on child pornography charge

  • In US
  • 2022-08-13 03:50:00Z
  • By The Brownsville Herald, Texas

Aug. 12-A federal grand jury found enough probable cause to file a criminal indictment against a 26-year-old Brownsville man charging him with child pornography, according to authorities.

The indictment against Daniel Benjamin Molstad was returned Thursday, federal court documents reflect. He is charged with one count of possession of child pornography.

The indictment reads that Molstad did knowingly possess material that contained multiple images of child pornography and used a Google Pixel 6 cellphone that contained images and videos of child pornography.

Molstad was arrested on Jan. 27 and is out of jail on a $150,000 bond.

A federal criminal complaint states that authorities found child pornography videos on a cellphone belonging to Molstad.

Authorities said he used the Telegram app to share the videos. Molstad was charged with one count of distribution or receipt of child pornography and one count of possessing or accessing child pornography.

Although Molstad had been employed by Children's Museum of Brownsville around the time of his arrest, CMB Director Felipe Pena III in an earlier interview said authorities assured him that none of Molstad's alleged wrongdoing occurred at the museum.

"It was a major tragedy to hear of what came out of it," Pena said.

Pena put out a statement on the CMB website after learning of Molstad's arrest assuring parents that nothing had happened at the museum.

"We continue to try and improve every day...we have great practices in place that protect everyone at the museum," Pena said.

Molstad had been employed at CMB since 2019 where he served as a front desk clerk.

According to court documents, the Texas Attorney General's Office on May 25, 2021, contacted the Homeland Security Investigations and Rio Grande Valley Child Exploration Investigations Task Force with an investigative referral from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The referral was from a cloud-based storage involving a suspect uploading multiple files of child exploitation, authorities said.

The investigation led authorities to Molstad, and on Jan. 27, special agents with RGV CEITF conducted a "consensual interview" with the man at his workplace in Brownsville, court documents reflect.

During the interview, Molstad admitted to receiving, distributing, and possessing child pornography, according to authorities. He stated "he had been downloading child pornography for approximately two years through online chat groups," the documents state.

Through a search of Molstad's cellphone, agents said they determined he had received or downloaded more than 200 videos of child pornography from Aug. 1, 2021, to Jan. 22, 2022, the documents state.

The videos depicted children engaged in sexual acts, officials said. "In addition, some of the videos depicted infants from approximately three to six months of age engaged in sexual acts," according to the documents.


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