Columbus man accused of having more than 250 files of child pornography after Snapchat tip

Columbus man accused of having more than 250 files of child pornography after Snapchat tip

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COLUMBUS — A Columbus man was found with more than 250 digital files of child pornography, according to court records.

Joshua W. Bates, 37, faces five felony counts of being in possession of child pornography with previous convictions. He was convicted on similar charges in 2007 in Douglas County.

The case against Bates was jump-started this summer when the Nebraska Internet Crimes Against Children task force contacted Columbus police about a tip.

According to court records, Snapchat, a mobile-messaging application used to share texts, photos and videos, notified the federal Center for Missing and Exploited Children about one of its users uploading unconfirmed child pornography through his or her account. 

The username on that Snapchat account — punkboy2001 — was associated with Bates, a registered sex offender.

A search warrant was issued, and several electronic devices and electronic storage items were seized. Court records show 255 video and still images of child pornography were found.

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