Child pornography found on TTU iPad belonging to former library employee

Child pornography found on TTU iPad belonging to former library employee
Justin McDonald (Source: Lubbock County Detention Center)

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - A now former Texas Tech library employee has been arrested and booked into the Lubbock County Detention Center after admitting to taking photos of a naked, underage female. The female is a member of his family, according to the search warrant.

According to the warrant, The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a tip from Yahoo on Jan. 24 about 13 images of possible child pornography uploaded on Jan. 2, 2019. Detectives learned the images were not child pornography, but were invasive visual recording.

Investigators were able to tell where the photo was taken from the data contained within the image. They were able to tell the images were taken on July 1, 2018.

Police were able to find the devices the photos were taken with and stored on. Those devices belonged to 36-year-old Justin David McDonald, who was in his office at the Texas Tech University Library. According to the search warrant, McDonald confessed to taking one or two photographs with his iPhone and the other images were screenshots. He also confessed to looking at child pornography around the time he took the photographs. He also told investigators he probably used his phone to look at more child pornography and used Google to search for it.

He told investigators he has looked at child pornography a couple of times since then.

Because his iPhone was synced to his university issued iPad, investigators took custody of it and obtained consent from Texas Tech to search it.

On Jan. 28, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a tip from Yahoo about 42 more images uploaded using a TTU IP address. The images in this cybertip contained the same photographs as before and multiple nude images of what appears to be the same girl. Justin McDonald’s Yahoo email address was attached to the images.

McDonald was arrested on Feb. 7, 2019 and was charged with possession of child pornography. He was also charged with possession of marijuana and possession of a controlled substance. He is being held in the Lubbock County Detention Center on a $50,750 bond.

According to officials with Texas Tech University, TTU Police Department is cooperating with the law enforcement agencies on this ongoing investigation.

McDonald is no longer an employee of Texas Tech University.

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