Child pornography arrests on the rise in Utah

Bethany Warr, a lawyer with the Utah Crime Victims Legal Clinic and works with victims of child pornography in Utah, stands in front of the Matheson Courthouse Friday, May 17, 2019, in Salt Lake City. Investigators say child pornography arrests have nearly doubled in Utah over the last five years, mirroring a nationwide trend. For child victims, the emotional and physical damage can be long-term, especially because the images can exist online forever, said Warr. "It's a wound that never heals, the material is out there and you don't know who in the world has seen you, seen your abuse and pain, and enjoyed it," she said. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Investigators say child pornography arrests have nearly doubled in Utah over the last five years, mirroring a nationwide trend.

Experts say rapid technological developments are making it easier for people to find the images and also helping investigators catch violators.

Commander Jessica Farnsworth of Utah’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force says in 2013 they arrested 133 people accused of downloading child pornography. Last year her unit arrested 226 people on such charges.

Child pornography crimes have been increasing throughout the country. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children said they received over 18 million reports of possible cases in 2018, compared to 10 million reports in 2017.

Vice-president John Shehan credits a law requiring companies to report child pornography with an influx of new reports.

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