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PASTOR & PORN

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FBI arrests Dry Ridge minister

By Jamie Baker-Nantz

(Editor’s Note: This story contains graphic details.)
FBI agents raided a Crittenden home on Feb. 18 and arrested a Dry Ridge pastor on charges he used a social networking site to post and solicit child pornography.

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Jerry Cannon, 62 of Crittenden, was taken into custody by FBI agents around 9:30 a.m. and lodged in the Boone County Detention Center.

He is accused of setting up fake Facebook profiles where he allegedly posted photos and videos of child pornography.

How the FBI came to Grant County looking for Cannon is a twisted tale, according to documents filed in U.S. District Court in Mobile, Ala.

A resident of Fairhope, Alabama told FBI agents a man named “Terry Lewis” was contacting them via e-mail about child porn.

The FBI, with permission, began using the Facebook account to communicate with “Lewis.”

Between Jan. 25 and Feb. 2, the FBI made contact with him several times by e-mail and by chatting on Facebook.

The agent said there were 600 images of child porn, including adults performing sex acts on pre-pubescent females and young girls with their genitalia exposed on Lewis’s Facebook account.

During the FBI’s investigation of “Terry Lewis” they discovered the account actually belonged to Jerry Cannon. Cannon’s driver’s license photo from Kentucky matched the profile photo on the “Terry Lewis” account. Cannon’s profile information lists his hometown as Mobile, Ala.

The FBI said despite disabling the “Terry Lewis” account, Cannon persisted by using more than a dozen false Facebook accounts.

The court documents say Cannon, using the name Terry Lewis, asked to swap child porn photos.

On Jan. 22, “Terry Lewis” sent a message saying, “Take me some pics please and fill me in real good, i have about 25 albums of pics on here so far, I had to start over when I was deleted, I will add you to see all, they range mostly 9-21 yrs old, I like them to be 10-16 myself, but in personal relationships, older 21-35.”

The FBI said they were also able to link the “Terry Lewis” account to an account for Theodore Lewis, which contained a photo of Cannon and his daughter.

In the court documents, the FBI also alleges that Cannon used his personal Facebook account on April 16, 2010 to send this message – “Well, I like looking at young beautiful girls and I can not seem to get it out of my system. I have tried to put it behind me but can not seem to bury it.”

On April 17, 2010, the court records indicate that Cannon also wrote “Thanks for the pics but a little young yet. I like pics of 11-13 yr old posing sexually looking like they enjoy it. Topless and nude shots.”

The FBI issued a subpoena to Insight Communications concerning IP addresses and the records show that the IP address used by Cannon and the fake Facebook accounts originate from 225 Shady Lane, Crittenden, which is the address listed on Cannon’s license. The Insight Communications account is registered to his wife,Cannon formerly served as pastor of God’s House Church on Broadway in Dry Ridge.

On Monday, Feb. 21, the pastor’s name had been covered with gray duct tape on the sign in front of the white frame building.

The News office received an anonymous phone call on Friday, Feb. 18 saying FBI agents were raiding a home on Shady Lane in Crittenden.

When checking out the phone call, FBI agents in a white van and several gray sedans were outside the brick home interviewing and photographing occupants for several hours.

Agents declined to comment at that time when questioned by a reporter from the Grant County News.

(Bryan Marshall, staff writer for the News also contributed to this article.)

Below, is Channel 9 WCPO's newscast of the arrest.

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