Tahoe Fire captain faces federal child porn charge | NevadaAppeal.com

Tahoe Fire captain faces federal child porn charge

Isaac Brambila
ibrambila@tahoedailytribune.com

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — South Lake Tahoe Fire Department Capt. Mark Wygant was federally charged with receiving child pornography Friday morning.

Only one charge was presented against Wygant in federal court, but an affidavit, filed by FBI special agent Glenn G. Norling, alleged there is probable cause to believe Wygant violated at least two more pornography sections of the federal law. Those allegations included possession of child pornography material and producing child pornography material. The material Wygant is accused of obtaining and producing included more than 5,000 images and 500 video files.

The material reportedly depicted several girls, the youngest, Norling stated, was between 4-and-9 years old.

Wygant was placed on paid administrative leave following his arrest pending results of a federal criminal investigation, according to a City of South Lake Tahoe press release.

Wygant allegedly received and produced the child-pornographic material between March 2011 and December, the affidavit states.

Norling was informed about the situation on Jan. 12 by a local law enforcement officer that a flash drive found in an unassigned locker in a South Lake Tahoe Fire Department station was found to contain a large amount of image and video files of child pornography.

An initial investigation was undertaken by the South Lake Tahoe Police Department and a state search warrant for the contents of the flash drive was obtained by police on Jan. 9.

Several of the videos, the affidavit states, appeared to be of a “known female minor.” Two detectives met with the girl and believe she was depicted in the videos. The girl was 12 years old in 2011, when the videos are believed to have been made.

The videos, in which Wygant is allegedly seen placing and concealing the camera, depict the girl getting out of the shower.

According to the document, during an interview on Thursday, Wygant admitted to “surreptitiously placing a camera (an iPhone 3) in a bathroom in (the victim’s) residence numerous times to record (the victim) nude for the purposes of the subject’s sexual gratification.”

He also allegedly admitted to later purchasing “spy cameras” on eBay to record additional videos. He placed four cameras in the bathroom.

The affidavit states that Wygant admitted he had nearly 100 videos of the victim.

Norling also cites three images depicting three girls performing different types of sexually explicit conduct. The girls are believed to be between 9-and-13 years old, 4-and-9 years old and between 6-and-10 years old.