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Utah registered sex offender charged with producing child porn of local 7-year-old girl

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Posted at 10:29 PM, Jun 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-19 22:53:31-04

WEST JORDAN, Utah — A Utah man who was already a registered sex offender was arrested this week after police say they found that he had uploaded pornographic images of a local child to the internet.

Andrew Craig Petersen, 32, was charged Friday with 10 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor and 10 counts of aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor. All 20 charges are first-degree felonies. He was booked the same day and ordered to be held without bail.

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Andrew Craig Petersen

According to police, images and videos depicting child pornography were uploaded via a Google account that was traced back to Petersen. Some of these, according to the arrest report, were "known images depicting child pornography," and others appeared to be newly-produced child pornography. Some were allegedly uploaded as recently as May 24.

According to charging documents, police identified one of the children in the pornographic images as a 7-year-old girl from Salt Lake County, and they are "working to identify numerous other victims." There were allegedly 10 photos of the same victim on Petersen's phone.

"West Jordan PD is working with state resources to ensure the female victim receives the assistance needed," the department wrote in a press release.

A man's arm was visible in one of the photos, and investigators said it appeared to match Petersen's arm based on skin color, hair color, and a "reddish color lump" on his arm.

Metadata on some of the images included information about the mobile phone they were taken on. It indicated that they were taken with a Samsung SM-G781U. Petersen was found in possession of that same model of phone when he was arrested. After searching his phone, police say they found more child porn.

Petersen is on the Utah Sex Offender Registry. Court records show he pleaded guilty in 2019 to attempted sexual exploitation of a minor, violation of a protective order, and possession of a forgery device. He pleaded guilty to one count each but had several more counts of the same charges dismissed. He served 405 days in jail and was released Feb. 28, 2020.

West Jordan Police asked any parents whose children have been in contact with Petersen to call them at 801-840-4000 and refer to case number WJ22-29182.