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After community uproar, grand jury indicts Decatur man accused of possessing child abuse images

Crime and public safety Decatur

After community uproar, grand jury indicts Decatur man accused of possessing child abuse images

Craig Hale Allen. Photo provided by the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office

Decatur, GA — A Decatur man accused of possessing child abuse images was arrested in 2017, but went four years without being officially indicted.

That changed on Sept. 27 when a DeKalb County grand jury issued a seven count indictment against Craig Hale Allen, accusing him of sexual exploitation of children. The indictment accuses Allen of possessing photos depicting the abuse of minors, including prepubescent children.

Allen declined comment when contacted by Decaturish.

Recently, parents contacted us saying they were concerned that Allen was violating the conditions of his bond, which said Allen could not have unsupervised contact with any children under the age of 18, including his children. Those concerns were forwarded along to the District Attorney.

Yvette Jones, a spokesperson for the District Attorney’s Office, said the case was still within the four-year statute of limitations, which was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our Office was recently made aware that the accused may, in fact, be in violation of those terms [of his bond],” Jones said on Sept. 20. “Law enforcement is actively investigating those allegations and will advise us accordingly as we work to prepare the case for presentment to the Grand Jury for indictment.”

The Grand Jury issued its indictment seven days later.

Allen, who lives in the 200 block of Jefferson Place in Decatur, was arrested in 2017 following a GBI investigation.

“A months-long child pornography investigation has led to the arrest of a Decatur, GA man,” GBI said in a press release. “On Wednesday, August 30, 2017, agents with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s Child Exploitation and Computer Crimes unit, along with the DeKalb County Police Department and Decatur Police Department, executed a search warrant at Craig Hale Allen’s residence located at Jefferson Place in Decatur. During the search, law enforcement found images of child pornography on Allen’s computer.”

Decatur Police assisted GBI in this case.

GBI said, “This investigation is part of the ongoing effort by Georgia’s Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force , housed within the GBI’s CEACC Unit, to identify those involved in the child pornography trade. The ICAC Program, created by the U. S. Department of Justice, was developed in response to the increasing number of children and teenagers using the internet, the proliferation of child pornography, and the heightened online activity by predators searching for unsupervised contact with underage victims. Anyone with information about this case or any other cases of child exploitation are encouraged to contact the GBI CEACC Unit at 404-270-8870.”

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