Ex-UCA pro­fes­sor guilty in child-porn case

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - BUSINESS SHOWCASE - DE­BRA HALE-SHEL­TON

CON­WAY — A former Univer­sity of Cen­tral Arkansas pro­fes­sor pleaded guilty Mon­day to 13 child-pornog­ra­phy counts and did not con­test 213 other counts.

Un­der terms of a ne­go­ti­ated agree­ment, Noel Camp­bell, 47, faces a 75-year prison term when he is sen­tenced Aug. 16 in Faulkner County Cir­cuit Court. Judge Charles Claw­son Jr. agreed to al­low Camp­bell to re­main free on bond un­til then.

The pros­e­cu­tion agreed to drop the re­main­ing 84 of the 310 child-pornog­ra­phy counts filed against Camp­bell in 2015.

The ex­act charge — dis­tribut­ing, pos­sess­ing or view­ing mat­ter de­pict­ing sex­u­ally ex­plicit-con­duct in­volv­ing a child — is a Class C felony, pun­ish­able by up to 10 years in prison on each count.

“The sen­tences for these things are way out of whack,” de­fense at­tor­ney Jeff Rosen­zweig said af­ter the hear­ing.

But Rosen­zweig added “this was the course he [Camp­bell] wished to take,” con­sid­er­ing the re­al­i­ties of his sit­u­a­tion and the way ju­rors might have re­sponded had he gone to trial.

Be­fore the court ses­sion be­gan, Camp­bell’s wife stood by him at the de­fense ta­ble and gen­tly rubbed his back with her right hand. With her left hand, she wiped away her tears.

Dur­ing ques­tion­ing aimed at mak­ing sure de­fen­dants un­der­stand the plea, its con­se­quences and other de­tails, Camp­bell, wear­ing a T-shirt and jeans, was com­posed.

The 13 counts to which Camp­bell pleaded guilty re­lated to im­ages on his per­sonal lap­top. He did not con­test other counts which arose from pornog­ra­phy on his UCA- owned com­puter at his former univer­sity of­fice.

Camp­bell re­signed from his po­si­tion as an eco­nom­ics pro­fes­sor at UCA in mid-April 2015 af­ter ear­lier be­ing sus­pended and banned from cam­pus as a re­sult of his April 3, 2015, ar­rest.

Deputy Pros­e­cut­ing At­tor­ney Jor­dan Crews said the counts the state dropped in­clude those re­lat­ing to “thumb­nail” im­ages, or pre­view-type pic­tures, that au­thor­i­ties do not be­lieve Camp­bell opened.

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