Malvern man ar­rested on 45 counts of child pornog­ra­phy

The Sentinel-Record - - FRONT PAGE - STEVEN MROSS

A Malvern man was ar­rested Fri­day on 45 felony counts in­volv­ing child pornog­ra­phy af­ter an in­ves­ti­ga­tion by Hot Springs po­lice into im­ages al­legedly found on his busi­ness phone ear­lier this year.

Ken­neth Roy Coates, 48, was taken into cus­tody at his res­i­dence at

11:30 a.m. Fri­day and charged with

45 counts of dis­tribut­ing, pos­sess­ing or view­ing of mat­ter de­pict­ing sex­u­ally ex­plicit con­duct in­volv­ing a child, each pun­ish­able by up to 10 years in prison.

Coates was later re­leased on $25,000 bond and is set to ap­pear Sept. 5 in Gar­land

County District Court.

Ac­cord­ing to the af­fi­davit, on March 1, Cpl. LeeAnn Zaner spoke to Coates’ em­ployer in Hot Springs who stated he had pro­vided Coates with a busi­ness cell­phone af­ter em­ploy­ing him, but Coates had been ter­mi­nated and he needed Zaner’s as­sis­tance in get­ting Coates to re­turn the phone to him.

Upon re­quest, Coates gave the phone to Zaner and al­legedly asked her to “wipe” the phone clean be­fore re­turn­ing it to his em­ployer. Zaner notes af­ter she got the phone she saw an im­age on it of a young fe­male, ap­prox­i­mately 7 to 10 years old, who was nude with her pri­vates vis­i­ble.

She in­formed Coates’ for­mer em­ployer of the im­age she saw and he agreed to al­low Zaner to seize the phone as ev­i­dence.

On June 8, De­tec­tive Kenny May ob­tained a search war­rant for the seized phone and sub­mit­ted it to the state crime lab in Lit­tle Rock so they could ex­tract the data con­tained in the phone. On July 24, May re­ceived a disk of the ex­tracted data.

On Aug. 9, May re­viewed the data and re­port­edly ob­served a to­tal of 45 im­ages of nude ju­ve­niles. He noted the ju­ve­niles were all “clearly un­der the age of 17” and the im­ages de­picted “lewd ex­hi­bi­tion” of the pri­vates and breasts of the fe­male ju­ve­niles.

Af­ter fur­ther doc­u­men­ta­tion and in­ves­ti­ga­tion of the ev­i­dence, a war­rant for Coates’ ar­rest was is­sued.


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