BROOKVILLE — A Brockway teacher who has been charged with 105 counts of possession and dissemination of child pornography and the sexual exploitation of children had his preliminary hearing continued Thursday.
Brookville Borough police arrested Michael T. Wonderling, 46, on April 17 after police Chief Vince Markle received information from the Pennsylvania State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation Northwest Computer Crime Unit’s Cpl. Bernard Novak.
Novak had begun an investigation after state police were given four CyberTipline reports submitted by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children after it was alerted by Microsoft of alleged child pornography distribution, according to the affidavit of probable cause.
The computer company reported that four images had been uploaded that were believed to be child pornography from one IP address. Law enforcement viewed the images and believes they are of females under the age of 18 shown in lewd sexual poses, according to the affidavit.
Further investigation led Novak to Internet provider Windstream. Novak issued a subpoena to Windstream and learned that the IP address originated at a Brookville address and that Wonderling was named as the subscriber. Microsoft also provided upload times and dates for each of the images.
In the execution of a search warrant at Wonderling’s home on Feb. 12, Markle and Officer Mickey Stormer recovered several cell phones, thumb drives, CDs and other computer equipment including a desktop computer.
According to the affidavit, on Jan. 22 the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children filed another CyberTipline report to the state police’s Northwest Computer Crime Unit noting that an image of a nude prepubescent female in a sexually explicit pose was allegedly “loaded or otherwise obtained” by an IP address. This report was also submitted after an alert from Microsoft.
Once again Novak searched for the second IP address and served an administrative subpoena to Windstream Services to determine the ownership of the address for the dates of Jan. 21-26. Windstream records showed that Wonderling owned the second IP address also.
A cell phone and a computer tower obtained through the search warrant on Wonderling’s home were transferred to the state police Computer Crime Unit in Meadville. State police forensic scientist Fernando Hernandez notified Stormer that he was able to reconstruct deleted images from a cell phone and computer seized at Wonderling’s residence and had found more than 30 images of alleged child pornography. Hernandez was still working on the analysis, according to the affidavit and his search is expected find more alleged documentation.
Wonderling remains incarcerated at the Jefferson County Jail in lieu of $60,000 bail. His preliminary hearing has now been scheduled for June 11 before District Judge Gregory M. Bazylak.