Skip to main content
CNN.com International
The Web    CNN.com      Powered by
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
ON TV
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
U.S.

Police hope photo of possible witness leads to child porn victim


more videoVIDEO
Police release photo of potential witness in child porn case.
TIP HOTLINE
Anyone with information on the girl in the picture should call the Orange County Sheriff's Department at
1-866-635-4357.
YOUR E-MAIL ALERTS
Sex Crimes
Florida
Canada
Crime, Law and Justice

ORLANDO, Florida (CNN) -- Florida and Canadian law enforcement officials Wednesday released the picture of a young girl, reclining on a couch, who authorities described as a possible witness in an Internet child pornography investigation.

Authorities said they found the image of the girl, who appears to be about 11, on child pornography Web sites, although not photographed in an inappropriate way. They did not say specifically what the girl may know.

Investigators believe she is sitting on the same couch in the same room as a young blonde-haired girl who is seen in sexual poses. However, they do not know where that location is and say they have no evidence the dark-haired girl witnessed any acts of abuse.

"That's why we want to speak to this little girl to see if she has any information for us," said Toronto Detective Sgt. Paul Gillespie, who heads the child exploitation team of that city's Sex Crimes Unit.

People with information on the girl are urged to call the Orange County Sheriff's Department at 1-866-635-4357.

Florida law forbids publicizing the images of a victim of a sex crime, and officials said they decided to release the picture of the possible witness because they feel the sex-abuse victim is in "severe danger."

There is nothing to suggest so far that the dark-haired girl is a victim of sexual or physical abuse, Lt. Matt Irwin of the Orange County Sheriff's Office told reporters. He said there also is no evidence that the photos are being used in a pornography ring.

In February, Toronto police released an image of a room -- using computer software to paint out the victim -- where the blond girl was photographed, in the hope someone would recognize something familiar.

The technique was not believed to have been used before.

Based on tips, police determined it was a hotel room at Walt Disney's Port Orleans Resort French Quarter in Orlando, Florida. Those photos were taken two or three years ago, police said.

"The picture being released today is of a place we believe to be another locale," Gillespie said. "Whether it is in fact a victim's residence, we don't know. So we have a crime scene in Orlando and we have another crime scene somewhere else in the country."

Investigators believe the child-abuse victim, thought to be no older than 12, lives in the northeastern United States or southeastern Canada.

In some pictures, she is sitting on a motorcycle, and Irwin said investigators contacted Harley-Davidson for records of owners of 1993 models.

The plight of the girl was brought to the attention of Gillespie in 2003 by European authorities, and he's hopeful she can be found.

"I truly believe we might be one step closer to identifying this victim."

According to Gillespie, police around the world have identified fewer than 500 of the estimated 50,000 children seen in online pornography -- or just 1 percent.

He has said he believes the girl has grown up with the abuse -- and the abuser is someone close to her such as a father or uncle.


Story Tools
Click Here to try 4 Free Trial Issues of Time! cover
Top Stories
Father guilty of killing 9 of his children
Top Stories
EU 'crisis' after summit failure

CNN US
On CNN TV E-mail Services CNN Mobile CNN AvantGo CNNtext Ad info Preferences
SEARCH
   The Web    CNN.com     
Powered by
© 2005 Cable News Network LP, LLLP.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us.
external link
All external sites will open in a new browser.
CNN.com does not endorse external sites.
 Premium content icon Denotes premium content.