Two men have been charged by local authorities with possession of child pornography.
The Bradenton Police Department announced Thursday afternoon that 67-year-old Michael E. Williams has turned himself in to California authorities to face charges in Manatee County.
Williams faces charges of promoting the sexual performance of a child and 10 counts of possession of child porn. More charges are pending, police said. His bond is currently set at $550,000.
Williams was identified as a suspect who allegedly possessed and distributed child pornography.
In early 2016, probable cause was established and Williams agreed, through his attorney, to turn himself in, authorities said. He absconded prior to turning himself in, according to BPD.
He was arrested in California in March and was extradited and booked into the Manatee County jail on Wednesday, according to police.
Anyone with information on this investigation is asked to call BPD at 941-932-9300 or Detective Kevin Bunch at 941-932-9380. Information can also be emailed to email@example.com.
In Palmetto on Thursday, Norman L. Sparling, 69, was arrested after a search warrant was served on where he was staying, and he was charged with one count of transmission of child pornography and three counts of sexual performance by a child, according to the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.
Detectives learned in 2016 there was possible child porn on Sparling’s computer, according to the sheriff’s office.
An investigation led to the search warrant and Sparling was subsequently arrested.
The investigation is ongoing.
Sparling, a seasonal resident of Florida according to Manatee County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Dave Bristow, left the state for some time, putting a hold on the case. When he returned, detectives pursued the case again.
According to a probable cause affidavit, two IP addresses were traced back to the Palmetto residence where Sparling was staying. The IP addresses allegedly were used to transmit a total of 535 files of suspected child porn.
Sparling told detectives he did not know and had never met the children in the videos downloaded from the internet.
Anyone with further information on the case is asked to call the MCSO at 941-747-3011, ext. 1970.