(As originally published with additional photos, Wed, February 7th 2024)
THE VILLAGES, Fla. (TND) — A man arrested twice in the past year on child pornography charges is out of jail, at least for now, and he has a judge to thank.
Gary Paul Slesinski’s legal trouble started last March when he was charged with two counts of transmitting child pornography.
According to his arrest report, the investigation actually started in November 2022 when “Microsoft submitted a complaint to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children after discovering what appeared to be one file of child pornography being uploaded to Bing Image.”
Then, it described Bing Image as “a search engine that allows users without accounts to reverse image search by uploading an image to find similar images.”
The deputy investigating for the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office in Florida described the image, in part, as showing “a female child that appears to be under the age of 10.”
The next day, the deputy was assigned a second cyber tip about an image uploaded to Bing Image.
That one “depicts a female child that appears to be under the age of 14,” the deputy wrote.
The judge in the case granted a search warrant for Slesinski’s home and it was executed early last March 24.
The arrest report noted, “The defendant explained he only resides at the residence with his wife, and they do not get visitors.”
It said only he, not his wife, accesses the internet and “he uses ‘Bing’ and ‘Yahoo’ to look at pornography.”
Then, it described the questioning.
“When asked what kind of pornography does he view, he replied, ‘Why don’t you just ask the question?’
“I questioned the defendant as to what he meant, at which time the defendant stated he has seen child pornography in the past but does not download it, sell it, or purchase it.
“The defendant further explained he does view child pornography and has been doing so for ‘10 years.’
“I asked the defendant what site he views child pornography on, at which time he stated he ‘searches for it’ using search engines, similar to Yahoo and Bing.”
Slesinski was arrested on two counts of transmitting child pornography and released in lieu of $4,000 bond — $2,000 for each charge — after almost 13 hours in jail.
His next stint in jail started five months later and lasted much longer, until the judge who approved the search warrant drastically reduced his bond.
That arrest report revealed, “An Amazon tablet and an HP laptop, both belonging to the defendant,” were taken during the search and “sent to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for computer forensic analysis.”
He was arrested on Aug. 31, three days after the state sent back its report.
That arrest report contains about four pages of details of 30 videos and images of child pornography that were found.
“Although there is an upwards of over 300 images of child pornography recovered from the laptop,” it said, “the above images is what is being used for additional charges.”
Those additional charges were 30 counts of possession of 10 or more images of child pornography.
A hearing on reducing Slesinski’s bond took place on Jan. 17.
According to the judge’s order, Slesinski’s lawyer had him evaluated and, “The doctor opined that the defendant was not sexually attracted to minors and posed a minimal risk to the community.”
The judge ended up reducing Slesinski’s bail by almost half to $8,000 per count, for a total of $240,000.
The 68-year-old was released nine days later, on Jan. 26, after almost five months in jail, under these conditions: no contact with minors, either directly or indirectly; wear an electronic monitor/GPS device; be placed on house arrest conditions, only leaving home for medical appointments, legal appointments, church services, the grocery store and pharmacy; surrender his passport; and not access the internet from any computer, laptop, smartphone or other electronic device.
The cases against Slesinski may be combined.