Forum in Deer Isle Focuses on Child Porn Arrest



DEER ISLE — A forum to air concerns in the wake of last month’s arrest of a school employee on child pornography charges drew about 20 people Monday night, with teachers outnumbering parents, but their interest was intense.

On Oct. 3, members of the Maine State Police Computer Crimes Unit arrested Joseph Audette, 30, at his home in Surry on a charge of possessing sexually explicit material.

Audette had worked as the computer network administrator in the Deer Isle-Stonington high school and elementary school for a little more than a year.

Mike McFadden, a special agent with the computer crimes unit, was one of three panelists who spoke at the forum.

Other panelists at the forum were Ashley Pesek from Atlantic Mental Health Center and Nina Milliken from Downeast Health Services.

McFadden answered questions and about the arrest and brought the audience up to date on the case’s progression.

He said police developed information regarding a person in Surry about six weeks before arresting Audette. He said the information was obtained with new technology being used for the first time in Maine.

McFadden said police conducted a “knock and talk” at Audette’s home, in which they attempted to learn more about the man’s Internet usage. He said Audette was cooperative and allowed police access to his computer.

After finding contraband photos and anime images of children engaged in sexual activity, police arrested Audette.

Audette is currently free on bail and awaiting a scheduled arraignment in court.

For more of the latest news, pick up a copy of The Ellsworth American.

James Straub

Reporter at Ellsworth American
Former Ellsworth American reporter James Straub covered the towns on Deer Isle and the Blue Hill Peninsula. He lives in Brooklin.